Visual History Archive®

An invaluable resource for humanity, with nearly every testimony encompassing a complete personal history of life before, during and after the subject’s firsthand experience with genocide.

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Testimony in Armenian Collection Will Include Visual History Archive’s First Funeral

The integration of the final Armenian Genocide collection testimonies in the coming months will bring one testimony that includes both a survivor’s life and his death.

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German Transcripts and ProQuest Search Added to Visual History Archive

USC Shoah Foundation released an updated version of the Visual History Archive (VHA) that includes functionality enhancements related to the Institute’s partnership with ProQuest.

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Impact in Profile

Meet Lacey Schauwecker

Lacey Schauwecker is researching screaming as a recurring trope in Guatemalan Genocide testimonies at the Center for Advanced Genocide Research this summer.

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The Visual History Archive® is USC Shoah Foundation’s online portal that allows users to search through and view more than 53,000 video testimonies of survivors and witnesses of genocide. Initially a repository of Holocaust testimony, the Archive has expanded significantly to include survivor and witness testimony from four other genocidal events: the Armenian Genocide (1915-1923), the Nanjing Massacre (1937), the Genocide Against the Tutsi in Rwanda (1994) and the Guatemalan Genocide (1978-1996).

The Rwandan testimonies were collected in the United States and Rwanda in two languages (English and Kinyarwanda) in collaboration with Aegis Trust (an anti-genocide NGO) and the Kigali Genocide Memorial (a museum and burial ground), with additional support provided by IBUKA (a survivors' advocacy group). The addition of the first 64 Rwandan testimonies in 2013 marked the initial expansion of the Archive beyond the Holocaust.

The Chinese interviews were conducted in Mandarin in the city of Nanjing, China, through a partnership with the Nanjing Massacre Memorial Hall.

The first of the Armenian testimonies were integrated into the Visual History Archive in April 2015, coinciding with the 100-year anniversary of the onset of those atrocities. For this collection, USC Shoah Foundation partnered with the late Dr. J. Michael Hagopian, who filmed all the interviews. The partnership includes Hagopian’s wife Antoinette and the Armenian Film Foundation he founded.   

The Guatemalan testimonies were collected in partnership with Fundacion de Antropologia Forense de Guatemala (FAFG). USC Shoah Foundation trained FAFG staff on its interviewing methodology; FAFG personnel then went out and gathered the testimonies.  

Each collection in the Visual History Archive adds context for the others, providing multiple pathways to learn from the eyewitnesses of history across time, locations, cultures and social-political circumstances.