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Seeking Space and Place in Holocaust Testimony
By Dr. Anne Kelly Knowles
Friday, October 7th, 11:30 - 1:00. Robinson Hall (35 Quincy St. - Harvard Yard), Room 107.
Audio Recording (.mp3 70MB)
Abstract: The Holocaust has become a new focus of spatial historical research in Europe and North America. The wealth of bureaucratic records and plans makes it relatively easy to map Nazi actions, camps and ghettos, and Nazi spatial visions for the Reich. It is much more difficult to map Holocaust spaces and places as victims experienced them. Survivor testimony provides rich information about spatial experience and movement, yet the information can be difficult to place in conventional cartographic terms for many reasons. The challenges multiply at scale. This paper presents the Holocaust Geographies Collaborative’s plan for grappling with the issues of mapping survivor testimonies and contextualizing them within the rapidly evolving universe of Nazi-controlled places and regional space. It will also discuss the crucial role that a multi-lingual regional gazetteer could play in facilitating representation of victims’ movements and bringing together victim and perpetrator perspectives.
Speaker Bio: Dr. Anne Kelly Knowles is a Professor of History at the University of Maine with interests in Historical GIS, Geovisualization, Digital Humanities, The Holocaust, Nineteenth-century United States, and Intersections of economy, technology, and culture and their expression in the landscape. Dr. Knowles holds a PhD in Geography from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and has held teaching positions at the University of Wales, Wellesley College, and Middlebury College, where she taught for thirteen years. Dr. Knowles joined the Department of History at the University of Maine in August 2015.