Teachers and Graduate Students Learn About Visual History Archive at University of Michigan

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 5:00pm

The University of Michigan- Flint held its second annual Workshop on Teaching and Working with Survivor Testimonies this week.

To mark the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan Tutsi Genocide, the workshop, geared toward high school and college teachers of global history, as well as graduate students in history, anthropology, education, literature, and other humanities discipline, included exploration of both Rwandan and Holocaust survivor testimonies in the Visual History Archive.

Participants, selected by application, learned information literacy and critical skills to aid in teaching and conducting research utilizing the Visual History Archive, which is accessible in full at UM-Flint. Learning outcomes also included understanding digital testimony as resources about the past and comprehending testimonies as constructed dialogic “retellings.”

The workshop was directed by Professors Kenneth Waltzer of Michigan State University and Theodosia Robertson of UM-Flint. Dan Leshem, associate director of research at the USC Shoah Foundation, and Henry Greenspan, University of Michigan Residential College, were among the presenters.

Forty-nine universities and museums around the world have full access to the Visual History Archive, which contains over 53,000 testimonies of genocide survivors recorded in 61 countries and 39 languages. To date, 415 university courses have been taught using the Visual History Archive and over 5,000 teachers are registered on IWitness, USC Shoah Foundation’s interactive educational website.