Trauma, Ethics, and Witness in Women's Holocaust Diaries (Remote)

Ravenel Richardson
Visiting Scholar, CWRU School of Medicine
Wednesdays, October 28-November 18
11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET

Recounting a range of gendered experiences - including sexual barter and the dissolution of familial ties - Renata Laqueur's diary is a compelling account of the dehumanization enforced by the Nazis in Bergen-Belsen. Despite many attempts, Laqueur was never able to find an American publisher for her diary. Laqueur provided several interviews to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in the 1990s in which she discusses her practice of diary keeping in the camp - what she included in her diary, what she intentionally left out, and what was lost due to traumatic memory - along with the moral accommodations she made to survive in the camp. Through an examination of Laqueur's diaries alongside her later oral testimony in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum archives, this course will address gender-specific experiences of genocide and question the social and political imperatives surrounding who is authorized to share their stories of the Holocaust.

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