Interdisciplinary Research Collaborative Seminar Duke – CulAnth 290S, crosslisted with History, counts for ICS global
Central European University – GENS 5528 Gender Studies, Cross-listed with History, Jewish Studies, Medieval Studies, 2 credits
Spring 2015 (Winter 2015 at CEU)
11 45 A.M. Monday and Wednesday (Durham) and Monday (Budapest)
Faculty: Robin Kirk, Duke Human Rights Center@FHI and CulAnth
-Smith Warehouse B183, Tuesdays and Thursdays 1-4 pm and by appointment
- Skype at robinkirk
Andrea Peto, Gender Studies, CEU
-Zrinyi 14, Room 505, TBA office hours
- Skype at peto.andrea
Patrick Stawski, Human Rights Archive, Duke University
- Rubenstein and by appointment : XXX and by appointment
- Skype at XXXX
Edit Jeges, CEU Department of Gender Studies, PhD student TA
Helga Dorner, CEU, CTL, lecturer
The course has a Moodle site where we’ve posted required readings, the class schedule and a link to a class web site. Assignments and project groups will also use this site. Students should contact Gabor Acs (firstname.lastname@example.org) concerning any problems with the Moodle site.
Course Description The collaborative seminar conducted between Duke and the Central European University will look at the issue of archives, memory, and human rights, introducing students to various emergent approaches to thinking about the past and its role in shaping the present. Because the universities are on different calendars and credit systems, we will note when a particular assignment or requirement varies between the two campuses. Unless otherwise noted, the requirements apply to both sections.
In the broadest sense, records of the past are open not only to interpretation, but also mobilization and deployment both to preserve and teach about the past but also to distort and repress it. The title of the course comes from the work of Verne Harris, who works as the archivist of the papers of Nelson Mandela. Harris describes himself as a “memory bandit,” using archives to promote justice. For him, archives are “a two-edged sword, and [they are] used by those who want to oppress us. We can use it in order to liberate ourselves.”
The class will focus on ways students can critically engage with archives and their particular strategies for preserving and providing access to the past, as well as the implications this management of memory has for contemporary social justice issues. The syllabus is organized around topics and interdisciplinary approaches that are of interest in a wide range of fields including history, public history and museum studies, cultural anthropology, Holocaust and genocide studies, literature and cultural studies, critical legal studies, gender studies, and film studies.
In the spirit of David Foster Wallace’s “This is Water,” this course – and the collaborative approach – is as much about your use of and engagement with the material as any fact or theory you might glean. This is an experimental and largely self-driven exploration of these issues, and you will get out of the experience rewards that are largely predicted and measured by what you put in it. Successful students will do the readings, write, prepare questions and express themselves not for a grade, but because they genuinely engage with these issues and people and seek to become and informed, aware and thoughtful person.
Due to the subject matter, some of the materials we will read, view and discuss are of a violent or graphic nature. We will do our best to alert you to this material prior to the week it is used in class.
We will introduce specific examples of archives, such as the Open Society Archives, the USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive, Duke University’s Human Rights Archive, the Digital Archive of the Guatemalan National Police, and others, so as to give students “hands-on” experiences with exploring archives, and to offer possibilities for developing a focused research project. We will also discuss and draw on other archives that may include written personal narratives (such as memoirs and letters), the records of human rights organizations and human rights activists, visual/oral interviews (such as, but not limited to, the Visual History Archive), documentary photography and film, artistic works, records of political tribunal testimonies, and colonial archives. Students are encouraged to pursue their own archive-related research projects in the seminar.
In addition, we will take advantage of our two geographic sites to investigate one additional approach to the archive – namely, a comparative analysis of “cities as sites of history.” The course will look at how history has been “concretized” in our two cities (Durham and Budapest) in comparison with literature on other select case-studies. We will examine cities as sites of historical commemoration in public spaces and museums but also as repositories of the past in terms of the traces left through time on urban spaces. At the same time we will note the parallel process of the demolition and erasure of the past through gentrification, urban renewal, civic planning, and other modes of control of public spaces and memory.
Logistics This seminar will involve simultaneous teaching on both sites. Roughly half of the classes will be joint sessions with classrooms in Durham and Budapest connected through video/internet technologies. Students will work in small groups (across disciplines and distance) to discuss their research projects and to prepare joint presentations; small group work will also take advantage of internet technologies. This is a writing intensive course that also is designed to build critical thinking and research skills.
Classes on the two campuses will meet on Mondays jointly for the 40 minutes and separately for the remainder of the time. Duke students will also be convening on Wednesdays.
As a way of starting off our discussion, each of the three instructors will give a short presentation about one of her encounters with/expansions of “the archive”; each will present one relevant “show and tell” archival artifact. We will give students instructions about sharing a ‘show and tell’ artifact of their own for the September 18 class discussion. (Full instructions for this and all other assignments are at the end of the syllabus and on the Moodle site.) We will introduce the syllabus and the various units.
Due to its unique integrated use of educational technology, the seminar will be the focus of research by the CEU Center for Teaching and Learning. However, this will not interrupt/disturb/influence teaching, learning and evaluation processes. A note on the nature of the research and on conducting ethical research in this seminar is available on the course Moodle site.
Introduce students to various emergent approaches to thinking about “the archive”
Question how some knowledges about the past get preserved and some repressed
Give students a “hands-on” experience of exploring an archive
Offer possibilities for developing a focused research project
Rethink their own individual research projects in terms of our critical discussion of the archive
Rethink their ideas/projects from an interdisciplinary perspective
Address question of how gendered perspectives on the archive have affected their approach to knowledge
Explore link between memory, archives and social justice
WRITING This class is a writing intensive seminar, so there is a corresponding focus on writing. We will be writing in different ways -- blog and Twitter posts, reading notes, journals and response papers. This is in addition to the work you will be doing on a final project. What we are looking for is thoughtful, clear and compelling writing.
Expect to do several drafts for the best grade.
A. READING NOTES Reading notes should be about 500 words long and are due for the week’s readings on moodle by midnight on SUNDAY, in preparation for our joint session. Appearance is important, so please take advantage of a spell and grammar-check! React to the materials and show us that 1) you have read them, and 2) you have an opinion about them that reflects the themes of this course. Use this as a testing ground for ideas that may develop into your research project. It’s helpful to print a copy and bring it to class for discussion.
It’s best to do the readings for the week – and discuss them in your notes – in the order that they appear in the syllabus. Make sure each assignment is reflected in your notes or you will be marked down. Each student may miss one week’s worth of notes without penalty, but no late notes will be accepted. If you must miss a class, don’t miss the notes!
You will also be communicating with your team via the WIKI on Moodle. These are forums for team discussions about the group project. Here are some tips for both the reading and wiki notes.
Be strategic about your contribution. For example, after you have done the required readings, think of the key arguments and also how they were supported and formulate your thoughts in writing. You may either directly post your thoughts about or critiques of the readings, or or else first read others' postings to see how they relate to your ideas and then post your thoughts as a response to or a modification of another student’s posting. Another strategy is to look for postings that you feel would benefit from further elaboration. You can also turn your thoughts into specific questions about particular readings that you’d like us to pursue further in class discussion or online. Be sure to support what you say with specific references to course materials and only materials from this course, please (readings, citations from archival materials or websites you investigated, lecture notes, etc.).
Get others thinking and so add value to the conversation by including questions for further discussion. You might want to check back and see if and how others have contributed previously so that you are aware of how the online conversation has developed before (and after) class.
Make postings short and purposeful. The length of reading notes should be no more than 500 words. Blog posts should be shorter. You will need to be concise.
Feel free to disagree with your classmates, but make the context clear. If you consider including a quotation from your colleague's original message be very specific about the details. Remember to disagree respectfully and support your point with evidence, but do not feel reluctant to offer a different interpretation.
Enjoy yourself! This online collaboration comes with many benefits, including learning from your peers in Budapest/Durham. Use the time productively to refine your ideas about the course content!
Your contributions to the group project will not be evaluated individually, but your performance and contribution to the group work and the presentation will be recorded by using a group evaluation sheet that describes the group’s joint work process. The group presentation will be taken into account in your class participation grade.
B. RESPONSE PAPERS Introduction and personal archival object: Create a single Powerpoint slide as a way to introduce yourself to the class. This should include important detauls about you and a photo of an object that is important to you. This is part a recognition that we all have history, overlapping identities and perspectives and part a way to see ourselves as subjects of a specific time, place and set of origins. This assignment requires you to choose a representation of something of importance to you, your family, your community/ies or your nation and write about it. Please make sure your personal history is something you are comfortable sharing with the class. Due on January 20 by 5 pm. Joint response paper 1 should be between 1,500 to 2,000 words. The paper must connect a speaker or film to the themes of this class, between the beginning of the semester up to XXX. Papers must reference at least two of the readings we’ve discussed in class. It’s important that your subject be as narrow as your materials require. Please upload your final submission to Dropbox. Paper 1 is due by 5 PM on XXX.
Joint response paper 2 is restricted to material we look at either during or after our trip to Chile. It should be between 1,500 to 2,000 words. As before, papers should present a theme or question, then reference at least 2 class readings. Please upload your final submission to Dropbox. Paper 2 is due by 5 PM on XXXX.
C. Team project Each student should sign up by XXXX for the project group that most closely reflects his/her research interests; sign up is on the wiki on the Moodle in the general information section. We will work in CEU-Duke teams that use archives in a central (though not exclusive) way. The project should result in an online exhibit or tour, a historical map on Google or some other format, a timeline or an image display. Topics must correspond to the following themes: a. what does segregation mean in Budapest/Durham?
b. what has been the role of women in social justice in Budapest/Durham?
c. how has gentrification changed life in Budapest/Durham?
d. what hate groups operate in Budapest/Durham and how do they compare?
e. how is immigration visible in Budapest/Durham? Ideally each small group will have 3-5 students, and include a mix of disciplines and campuses so as to facilitate exchange across disciplines and between Duke and CEU students. Students can draw on a range of internet technologies to communicate within the group. These groups will be a good site for sharing thoughts, ideas, and questions about the topics or archives you are working on for your research paper.
In addition, each group will be responsible for a joint 20-minute presentation to the whole class on the date indicated in the syllabus. The presentation should reflect the intersection between the individual projects of the students in the group and the larger themes and questions that the course is addressing, especially as raised by the readings/tasks/archives assigned for the unit in question. Everyone in the groups must participate in preparing the presentation but not everyone needs to speak; the roles can be divided up in any way that makes sense to the group; each group will fill in a group evaluation sheet about the common work. (Instructions for this evaluation are available on the Moodle site.) The presentation should focus on conveying the group’s ideas through an oral presentation supported by any form of media necessary. Please do not simply read a prepared paper. Any links, documents, images etc. needed for the presentation must be posted on the Moodle site so that they will be available on both sites.
D. Final proposal and project The final research paper must be based on original research that investigates a particular archive or examines the concept of “the archive.” The paper must draw connections between the particular research focus and the larger themes and questions raised by the seminar. The organization and focus of the paper should take into account the feedback offered by the instructors on the proposal; students are strongly encouraged to consult with one or more of the instructors as they write their papers. Instructors’ comments on the final paper will be helpful for those students wishing to revise their papers for submission to the Spring 2013 conference.
There will be slightly different paper requirements for students on the two campuses:
For Duke students, the paper should be between 10-12 pages (typed, doubled-spaced). The paper is due on XXX on the Moodle site.
For CEU students – the paper should be between 10 and 12 pages (typed, double-spaced) and is dueXXXXX to the Moodle site.
Students are required to consult with at least one of the faculty instructors by Skype or in office hours before the proposal submission. At least one of the faculty instructors will offer feedback on the proposal that you should take into account (and follow up on as needed) as you develop your project.
20% weekly reading notes
20% class participation including participation in field trip
10% group presentation (team work)
20% response papers (2)
30% final research proposal and paper
Required book: W. G. Sebald, Austerlitz. Translated by Anthea Bell. New York: Random House, 2001. SCHEDULE January 12 (Duke, CEU): Introduction to class Assignment: find a historical site or monument to write about 500 words max January 14 (Duke-Patrick leads): What is a social justice archive? Archives power : memory, accountability, and social justice, Jimerson, Randall C., 2009. Political pressure and the archival record, edited by Margaret Procter, Michael Cook, Caroline Williams, 2005
Community archives : the shaping of memory, Bastian, Jeannette Allis, 2009
Controlling the past : documenting society and institutions , Terry Cook, editor, 2011
January 19 (combined-Robin leads): Encountering/Expanding the Archive: Starting the Conversation, Part I
This first joint session will focus on student introductions. The class will focus on 30th anniversary of the Argentina Nunca Más report and Latin America as well as some US Civil rights history.
For introductions, each student will post on the Moodle site one PowerPoint slide with a brief self-introduction including a statement about where your interests intersect with the topic “interrogating the archive” and also one archival artifact (document/image/audio clip, or whatever) pertaining to your interests for “show and tell,” as well as a photo if desired. You should be ready to make a very short statement in class (30 – 60 seconds – no more!) as we connect the images with the students in the classroom.
The slide needs to be posted by XXX P.M. (Durham time)/ 23:00 (Budapest time) on XXXX!
Harris, Verne. Archives and justice: a South African perspective, 2006
Harris, Verne. “The Real Mandela,” mindfood.com, DATE
January 21 (Duke): Memory in the American backyard
Japanese internment camp yearbooks, CDPL death penalty case files, Jomo Jokwe Omawae papers, etc.
The combing of history, Cohen, David William, 1994 Gopnik, Adam. 2014. “Stones and Bones,” The New Yorker. Please also review that issue’s cover, included on the Resources Page as 9-11 Memorial Cover.
ADD ON DURHAM
Special event: JANUARY 22-23: Granito screening and lunch
January 26 (combined-Andrea leads): Encountering/Expanding the Archive: Starting the Conversation, Part II
QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER: how do the different authors here think about historical memory? What is the relationship between memory and history (however defined)? What are some of the meanings of “the archive” they introduce and how do these meanings relate to or expand more conventional understandings of archives as official repositories of documents of the past?
Sigmund Freud “A Note Upon the Mystic Writing-Pad.” The Archive. Ed. Charles Merewether. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2006, 20-24.
Jacques Derrida, Archive Fever: A Freudian Impression (Tr. Eric Prenowitz). University of Chicago Press, 1998: 23, 97-101.
Michael Geyer, “Virtue in Despair: A Family History from the Days of the Kindertransports,” History and Memory, 17, No. 1-2, Special Issue: Histories and Memories of Twentieth-Century Germany (Spring-Winter 2005): 323-365.
January 28 (Duke): More discussion on readings
February 2 (combined-Robin leads): Secret archives and archiving hate groups
QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER: What kind of historical narrative can one build from the de-constructed, re-interpreted or re-enacted file?
Moritz Föllmer, “Surveillance reports” in Miriam Dobson/Benjamin Ziemann (eds.) Reading Primary Sources (London: Routledge, 2008), 74-89.
Weld, Kirsten. “The Power of Archival Thinking” and “The Possibilities and Limitations of Archival Thinking” in Paper Cadavers: The Archives of Dictatorship in Guatemala. Durham: Duke University Press Books, 2014, pp. 1-26, pp. 236-256.
“The Lives of Others” (2006) The place is East Berlin, the year is 1984, and it all begins with a simple surveillance assignment: Capt. Gerd Wiesler (Ulrich Mühe in a restrained, yet deeply felt performance), a Stasi officer and a specialist in this kind of thing, has been assigned to keep an eye on Georg Dreyman (Sebastian Koch, Black Book), a respected playwright, and his actress girlfriend, Christa-Maria Sieland (Martina Gedeck, Mostly Martha). Though Dreyman is known to associate with the occasional dissident, like blacklisted director Albert Jerska (Volkmar Kleinert), his record is spotless. Everything changes when Wiesler discovers that Minister Hempf (Thomas Thieme) has an ulterior motive in spying on this seemingly upright citizen. In other words, it's personal, and Wiesler's sympathies shift from the government to its people--or at least to this one particular person. That would be risky enough, but then Wiesler uses his privileged position to affect a change in Dreyman's life. The God-like move he makes may be minor and untraceable, but it will have major consequences for all concerned, including Wiesler himself. Each student should explore one of these archives as part of this week’s class preparation. The project group working on this topic should plan to include some discussion of each of the collections in their group presentation.]
3. Southern Poverty Law Center, Ku Klux Klan materials (Duke)
4. Photo collection from the Stasi Archive (Simon Menner): Questions to consider as you browse: What is what the gaze of the Secret Police sees? Compare this artistic website with websites showing “documentary” material! How fictional is history?
February 4 (Duke): Follow up on readings February 9 (combined-Andrea leads): The Personal as Historical: Personal Narratives and the Expansion of the Archive
Questions to consider: what factors influence the variety and nature of personal memories and experiences that get recorded and preserved across time? How do personal records of the past affect what counts as “history”? How do relationships of power (e.g. state, class, gender) constitute the archive of personal narratives? How does genre matter in terms of the nature of what is recorded (or not)? For example, what differences do you notice in the sorts of incidents or stories that are recorded in published memoirs as opposed to migrant letters or life history interviews?
Mary Jo Maynes, Jennifer Pierce and Barbara Laslett, Ch. 3 “The Forms of Telling and Retelling Lives” from Telling Stories: The Use of Personal Narratives in the Social Sciences and History, 70-97.
Memoirs: “Three narratives of childhood” (Excerpts from three early 20th-century Central European women’s published memoirs of childhood - Adelheid Popp, Hedwig Dohm and Anna Altmann).
Letters: Letters from the Marshall T. Meyer Collection from Duke University
Life history interviews: Each student should explore one of the following websites as part of this week’s reading/class preparation. The project group working on this topic should plan to include some discussion of each of the sites in their group presentation.
Library of Congress, American Memory http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/wpaintro/wpahome.html
2. Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1938l 3. Suffragists Oral History Project 4. The Hayti Spectrum: Documenting Negro Life of the 1920s, ’30s, and ’40s in Durham, N.C. The Hayti Spectrum oral history project, conducted by interviewer Brenda L. Williams, explores life in the Hayti Community of Durham, N.C., from the 1920s to the 1960s. Also included are 37 folders of introductory materials compiled by the interviewer. These materials include newspaper clippings, church and funeral programs, photographs, and items related to some of the interviewees in the collection.
February 11 (Duke): Follow up on readings
February 16 (combined-Robin leads): Is there a universal right to truth?
QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER: Where does the perception that we are guaranteed a right to truth come from?
Ishay, Micheline R. “Human Rights and the Enlightenment,” The History of Human Rights (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004), pp. 64-116.
Mendez, Juan. “Accountability” and “Justice,” in Taking a Stand: The Evolution of Human 1St Edition edition. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan Trade, 2011, pp. 137-161, 162-184.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights The Power of Rights (Open Society video)
Browse these collections:
1. ICTJ records
2. Truth and Reconciliation Archive (SAHA) February 18 (Duke): Is there truth?
TASK: As a preparation for field trips, post one internet link that in your view best represents your city for students from elsewhere. The students in Budapest will visit The House of Terror.
Post these links on the appropriate field trip wiki on the Moodle site by XXX no later than 4:00 P.M. EST, which is XXX, Budapest time. You are advised to browse these wikis before the field trip.
Strejilevich, Nora. “Testimony: Beyond the Language of Truth,” Human Rights Quarterly, Volume 28, Number 3, August 2006, pp. 701-713.
Hayner, Priscilla B. Unspeakable Truths: Transitional Justice and the Challenge of Truth Commissions, second edition (New York: Routledge, 2011), pp. 1-26, 121-209.
Phelps, Teresa Godwin, “What Can Stories Do?” and “Telling Stories in a Search for More than Truth” in Shattered Voices: Language, Violence, and the Work of Truth Commissions. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004. 53-72.
Death and the Maiden (Lilly Library, DVD 3617): Fifteen years ago, Paulina Escobar had her life shattered when she was taken prisoner and tortured by a sadistic doctor. Now, through a chance encounter, she may have found the man responsible for her nightmares and tonight he’s going to pay. But how far will she go to get even? And how can she be sure, after so many years, that she has found the right man?
February 23 (combined): The City as Archive: Urban Spaces and Historical Memory
Questions to consider: Besides being sites where particular kinds of historical processes occur, cities also “store” history in the built environment, in public spaces of commemoration and debates over what should be destroyed or preserved, in the memories of city dwellers, etc. Consider how, in these various approaches to the city as archive, the past has been represented, re-encountered, or debated in city spaces.
Michael Kimmelman, “Rebuilding a Palace May Become a Grand Blunder.” The New York Times December 31, 2008.
Greene, Christina. Our Separate Ways: Women and the Black Freedom Movement in Durham, North Carolina. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2005. pp XX.
February 25 (Duke): Durham tour
During the field trip, using any appropriate media (such as your cellphone, a camera, or even pen and paper!) students from each campus will collectively gather and then “archive” records of their field trip on the appropriate field trip wiki of the Moodle site. Students on each campus will thus have access to this archive of records of each other’s field trip experiences. Each class will organize this archiving process separately and post their archival collections by 4:00 P.M. (Durham time) or 23:00 (Budapest time) on XXX. Participation in the field trip and in building its archive is evaluated as part of the class participation portion of the grade.
March 2 (combined): Text and Image
Questions to consider: Think about the interplay between text and image in Daniel Blaufuks’ Terezin. How might we want to think about this as an archival project that contains H.G. Adler’s archival Theresienstadt: 1941-1945, Sebald’s reworking of Adler’s text and images in Austerlitz, and the stored documentary video of the 1944-45 propaganda film about Theresienstadt that Blaufuks inserts as postscript to his text? What happens when the line between text and image is blurred?
Daniel Blaufuks, Terezin. Steidl Verlag, 2010 (excerpts).
Watch Michael Snow, “So is This” (video, 1982).
Hal Foster, “The Archival Impulse.” October, 110 (Autumn, 2004): 3-22.
March 4 (Duke): Follow up on readings
March 6-15 Duke Spring Break Robin at CEU, Hungary March 9
March 17 (Combined): Archives of struggle: Colonial/Anticolonial Archive
Helena Pohlandt-McCormick, I Saw a Nightmare…” Doing Violence to Memory: The Soweto Uprising, June 16, 1976
Browse the entire site but focus on the following sections for our discussion:
Prologue and Readers' Guide athttp://www.gutenberg-e.org/pohlandt-mccormick/readersguide.html
Chapter 2 "I Heard There Was a Riot in Soweto…:" A Narrative of June 16, 1976”
Task: Each student should explore one of these websites as part of this week’s class preparation.
1. Pictures of Native Americans in the United States from the “Native American Heritage” collection at the U.S. National Archives: Introduction and Image collection.
2. Video for Social Change Oral History Collection
March 24 (combined): The Legal System and Archives
Verhoeven, Claudia, Court files and Pendas, Devin O., Testimony in Miriam Dobson/Benjamin Ziemann (eds.) Reading Primary Sources (London: Routledge, 2008) 90-106 and 226-243.
Campbell, Kristen, “Legal Memories: Sexual Assault, Memory, and International Humanitarian Law.” Signs 28 no. 1 (2002): 149-78.
Film excerpt in class: Eichmann trial session 68 Long Night’s Journey into Day: This ground-breaking documentary reveals a South Africa trying to forge a lasting peace after 40 years of government by the most notorious system of racial segregation since Nazi Germany. The documentary studies South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), set up by the post-apartheid, democratic government to consider amnesty for perpetrators of crimes committed under apartheid’s reign.
Each student should explore one of these sources as part of this week’s class preparation. The project group working on this topic should plan to include some discussion of each of the sites in their group presentation.
1. The case of the former Yugoslavia: the trial of Dusko Tadic (excerpts from the trial is available for educational use only)
OSA 319/t191/0/3 (2)
ICTY (A3) 7/5/96 2/9/98
2. CDPL records
3. ACLU of NC records
March 26 (Duke): David Tolbert Visit
Reading list to be announced
March 31-April 2: Combined presentations
April 7 April 14-16 April 22 (Duke) -- LAST DAY OF DUKE CLASS
April 22 (Duke last day):