Institute News

2014 International Conference Panel Spotlight: Place and Media in Remembering Genocide

A different panel or roundtable at USC Shoah Foundation’s upcoming international conference, Memory, Media and Technology: Exploring the Trajectories of Schindler’s List, will be profiled each week.

Genocide survivors' testimonies are often cited in research papers and books - but that's not the only way they can be used. The Place and Media in Remembering Genocide panel will introduce three projects that incorporate survivor memories into specific locations and forms of media.

The panel is chaired by Marianne Hirsch, who is the William Peterfield Trent Professor of English and comparative literature at Columbia University and professor at the Institute for Research on Women, Gender and Sexuality, is serving on the conference’s steering committee. Hirsch was also USC Shoah Foundation’s 2013 Yom Hashoah Scholar in Residence.

UCLA’s Michelle Caswell, assistant professor of archival studies, will present her research on a thriving business in Cambodia: two survivors of the Khmer Rouge’s Tuol Sleng prison during the Cambodian Genocide who sell old prisoner mug shots to visitors of the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum. Caswell studies the commodification of these photographs and the purpose they serve in continuing to draw attention to human rights (though they are in danger of being de-contextualized through digital media) and also providing a living for the survivors who sell them.

Edyta Gawron, from Jagiellonian University, will share her knowledge and experiences of being part of the team that designed the Schindler Factory museum in Krakow, Poland. Her presentation will cover the process of creating the museum and its multimedia exhibitions, as well as how the team balanced the various perspectives that come into play, including Steven Spielberg’s film Schindler’s List.

Andras Lenart will discuss his work on Open Society Archive’s Yellow Star Houses project in Budapest. Through crowdsourcing, the Yellow Star Houses project aims to map the location of each residence in Budapest that had been occupied by Jews, and therefore marked with a yellow Star of David, during the Holocaust.