Event Details

Meeting Survivors Online: Negotiating Memory in the “Virtual In-Between”

March 01, 2016 @ 4:00 pm
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2016/03/01 CAGR Teaching Fellow Alina Bothe Lecture: "Meeting Survivors Online"

Bothe’s lecture, “Meeting Survivors Online: Negotiating Memory in the Virtual In-Between,” focused on both the theory and practical implications of the “digital turn,” or the rapidly evolving digital landscape that is changing how people interact with the virtual and analog worlds. Her research is centered on the Visual History Archive as a paradigmatic example of this shift in action.

A lecture by Alina Bothe (Germany)
2015-2016 USC Shoah Foundation Teaching Fellow

USC Social Sciences Building, Room 250

The digitization of testimonies in the VHA has not only changed the sources of media material, but also the sphere through which history is researched, written and perceived. The “digital turn” offers complex new challenges for historical research and narration. In this presentation, Alina Bothe will open the “virtual in-between of memory” as an epistemological approach to understanding the consequences of digitization. This approach is rooted in postmodern theory, as well as in media studies. She will discuss why users of the archive often have the impression of “meeting” the survivors, even though they have “only” been watching a testimony in the digital archive. The “virtual in-between of memory” is a new sphere to negotiate memory online. Drawing from her intense analysis of user comments on VHA testimonies on YouTube she will demonstrate in practice how the virtual in-between functions.

Alina Bothe studied History, Politics and Eastern European History at Freie Universität Berlin. From 2012 to 2015 she was a Research Fellow at the Center for Jewish Studies Berlin-Brandenburg. She wrote her Ph.D. thesis about the “digital turn” in Shoah memory, focusing on the USC Shoah Foundation Visual History Archive. She and Gertrud Pickhan were awarded the 2015-2016 USC Shoah Foundation Teaching Fellowship. She has organized different international workshops and conferences within the last few years, among them “Survivors – Politics and Semantics of a Concept” and “Bearing Witness More Than Once – How Media, Time and Institutions Shape Shoah Survivors Testimonies".

Refreshments will be served. Please RSVP at cagr@usc.edu


Start: March 01, 2016 / 4:00 PM
Where: USC Social Sciences Building, Room 250, Los Angeles, CA
USC Social Sciences Building, Room 250
3502 Trousdale Parkway, USC Social Sciences Building, Room 250, Los Angeles, CA 90089, United States