As the academic year came to a close, we shifted from academic programming to preparing for our upcoming visiting scholars, 2018-2019 fellows, and fall conference and conducting outreach locally and beyond.

Associate Director Martha Stroud kicked off the month with a trip to the University of Minnesota to give a lecture about her research on Indonesia and to conduct a workshop on the Visual History Archive (VHA). I traveled to Washington, D.C. to participate in a meeting of Academic Committee of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and in a symposium on the ethical challenges of Holocaust studies. 

For the first time ever, the Center hosted an informational booth at the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA) annual conference, which was held this year in downtown Los Angeles. Our booth attracted many visitors over the course of the three-day conference. (See below for more about these outreach activities.)

We have many exciting plans for this summer. In the coming weeks we will welcome our 2018 USC summer fellows, undergraduate and graduate fellows, and a variety of visiting researchers. Center staff members will also continue to conduct outreach and present their research at home and abroad, with trips to New Orleans, Washington, D.C., and France. 
The Center was also invited to co-organize an international conference entitled "In Global Transit: Forced Migration of Jews and Other Refugees (1940s-1960s)", which will take place in May 2019 at German Historical Institute West and The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life at the University of California, Berkeley. See the call for papers below.

Lastly, we continue to prepare for our upcoming conference, “International Perspectives on Kristallnacht: 80 Years After, the Nazi Pogrom in Global Comparison”, which will be held in November 2018. We are co-organizing the international conference with the USC Casden Institute for the Study of the Jewish Role in American Life and presenting it in cooperation with the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D.C., and the Center for Research on Antisemitism at the Technical University Berlin, Germany. The conference website will be launching soon, where you will be able to read about the conference program and the participants. Get a preview of the conference program here. We hope you will register to join us. 

Stay tuned for further updates in next month’s newsletter.

Wolf Gruner

Founding Director of the USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research
Professor of History and Shapell-Guerin Chair in Jewish Studies


During May, the Center conducted outreach within LA and beyond, including VHA workshops and lectures on staff research. Associate Director Martha Stroud presented on her research about the 1965 mass killings in Indonesia at the University of Minnesota Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. During her visit she also gave a lively VHA workshop, introducing a sizeable audience of faculty, students, and staff to the archive’s history, interface, and potential for research and teaching. 

Center Director Wolf Gruner participated in a meeting of the Academic Committee of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. The next day, he presented about future ethical challenges in Holocaust studies at the concluding panel of USHMM’s Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies symposium on ethical questions of Holocaust studies. 

Later in the month, Center staff members Badema Pitic and Isabella Lloyd-Damnjanovic hosted a booth at the 2018 Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA) annual conference. The conference attracted hundreds of people from universities, museums, and publishing houses across the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. At our booth, Center staff introduced over 60 people to the Visual History Archive and the Center’s academic programming. The three-day conference, which convened many indigenous researchers from across the world, served as a valuable opportunity to introduce scholars researching genocide and mass violence against indigenous populations to the Visual History Archive, which holds testimonies of indigenous Maya targeted during the Guatemalan genocide and also has rich comparative potential for those researching violence against and oppression of indigenous peoples. 

Next month, Wolf Gruner will co-teach the two-week 2018 Silberman Seminar "Comparative Racial Theories and Practices from the Third Reich to the Jim Crow South” for university professors at the Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at USHMM in Washington, D.C. In late June, Badema Pitic will travel to New Orleans to give a VHA workshop at the American Library Association annual conference and exhibition. 

VHA Book Spotlight

Jeffrey Shandler, author of Holocaust Memory in the Digital Age: Survivors Stories and New Media Practices (2017) was spotlighted in our February newsletter for his recent book about the Visual History Archive. In this New Books Network podcast, he discusses the ways in which technological advances and changing archival practices impact historical memory and change the way that scholars and the public engage with the past. 

Listen to the interview here


Call for Papers

In Global Transit: Forced Migration of Jews and Other Refugees (1940s-1960s)

International Conference at German Historical Institute West and The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life at the University of California, Berkeley, May 2019

- Simone Lässig (German Historical Institute Washington/GHI West, UC Berkeley)
- Wolf Gruner (USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research, Los
- Francesco Spagnolo (The Magnes, UC Berkeley)
- Swen Steinberg (University of Dresden)

In cooperation with:
- India Branch Office of the Max Weber Foundation, New Delhi (Indra Sengupta, Razak Khan)
- China Branch Office, Beijing (Max Jacob Fölster)

This international conference will examine the experience of Jewish and other refugees who found haven – but not new homes – in Asia, Africa, and Latin America during the Second World War. The conference aims to illuminate the particularities of (usually) involuntary Jewish migration from and between countries of the global South that have received little scholarly attention thus far. We seek, moreover, to use the experience of Jewish refugees as an analytical prism to consider the phenomenon of forced migration more generally.

For more information on the conference and application process, click here