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October 20, 2013

Starting Out


I have already been a student at the University of Warwick for three whole weeks. How time flies. People weren't lying when they said the year was going to pass in a flash.

I have one year, one project, one thesis. As I am doing a Masters by Research my course is a little less structured that your standard taught MA and therefore I am having to recall the art of self-discipline. And I have to say I'm not doing too badly. Wel I'm on track for now at least.

A little bit about my forthcoming research project in the style of a 'elevator pitch':

I am the granddaughter of an Auschwitz survivor and I did my BA thesis on his oral testimony which he recorded with Stephen Spielberg's Shoah Foundation. From this I developed an interest in oral history, specifically how survivors of trauma remember and talk about their families before, during, and after the event. My work will be focusing on generational transmission in oral testimonies to attempt to understand and draw some conclusions about how the survivors' memories of their families affect their subsequent lives. By broadening our knowledge of this subject I hope to enable a greater availablity of support and advice to survivors as well as their children and grandchildren. I am going to be looking at oral sources from both Holocaust and Khmer Rouge survivors. The Cambodia aspect is particularly interesting to me and I think the country and it's people could benefit hugely from support bodies after the immense trauma that the country suffered just a few decades ago. Unfortunately my work comes too late for the majority of Holocaust survivors but I believe the results could be applicable to all survivors of great trauma such as genocices.

So I clearly have a fun filled year in front of me. Listening to people describe familial separation and the deaths of loved ones is not easy but it does fascinate me. I hope you find some interest in the subject too.


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