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Mediation at the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin

Mediation at the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin

Dekel, Irit, author

Analyzing action at the Holocaust memorial in Berlin, this first ethnography of the site offers a fresh approach to studying the memorial and memory work as potential civic engagement of visitors with themselves and others rather than with history itself. This text offers a novel approach to the Holocaust Memorial and its study through the focus on performances. Based on extensive ethnographic research, and drawing on dramaturgic theory, memory studies and theories of the public sphere, the book offers a fresh theorization of memorial experience by analyzing interaction between guides, memorial workers and visitors

eBook, Electronic resource, Book. English. Electronic books.
Published Basingstoke, Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013

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Details

Statement of responsibility: Irit Dekel
ISBN: 1137317825, 9781137317827
Note: Includes bibliographical references and index.
Physical Description: xii, 196 pages : illustrations (black and white)
Series: Palgrave Macmillan memory studies
Subject: Social & cultural history; History; Second World War; Denkmal fur die ermordeten Juden Europas (Berlin, Germany); Popular culture; Social groups: religious groups & communities; Society & culture: general; Collective memory.; The Holocaust; Warfare and Defence.; Germany; General & world history; European history; Europe
Reproduction: Electronic reproduction. Askews and Holts. Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Series Title: Palgrave Macmillan memory studies.
Other formats: Also available in printed form ISBN 9780230363304

Contents

  1. Acknowledgements
  2. List of Figures
  3. Introduction
  4. 1. Navigating Experience: Studying the Holocaust Memorial
  5. 2. Spheres of Speakability: Old and New Discursive Modes
  6. 3. Memory in Action: New Ethics of Engagement with Holocaust Memory
  7. 4. Mediation at the Holocaust Memorial
  8. Conclusion

Author note

Irit Dekel is Postdoctoral fellow in the Social Sciences department in Humboldt-University, Berlin, Germany and teaches at ECLA of Bard in Berlin. She has published on memory politics in Germany and Israel, media, and memory tourism.

Description

Mediation at the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin offers a novel approach to the memorial and its study through the focus on performances. Based on extensive ethnographic research, and drawing on dramaturgic theory, memory studies and theories of the public sphere, the book offers a fresh theorization of memorial experience by analyzing interaction between guides, memorial workers and visitors. Moving away from models of postmemory and post trauma approaches, the book recognizes the precariousness and variation of memory work done at the memorial through the ways visitors engages with the act of remembrance rather than with its object, namely the history of Jewish persecution and the Holocaust. This engagement explores how visitors present and perform their 'moral career' at the site, whose codes have been shaped by knowledge about and visits in this and other sites of Holocaust remembrance.

Reviews

"Dekel focuses on the participation in memory work as a potential act of citizenship - citizenship defined in cosmopolitan and inclusive terms - and, by exploring the different stages of participation in memory work, she is able to theorise the 'moral career' of visitors. Mediation at the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin moves us away from the restrictive notions of the Holocaust sublime and towards the Holocaust's speakability through performances of memory." - Richard Crownshaw, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK