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Grant number like: FT-57701-10

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Carolyn Sue Ellis
University of South Florida (Tampa, FL 33620-9951)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2010 – 9/30/2010

Collaborative Witnessing: Survivors of the Holocaust Interpret Their Lives

Researchers are living in the last era when they can interact with survivors of the Holocaust and document their life stories. Conventional oral history protocols separate the roles of story-teller and story-interpreter and limit the form and content of survivors' stories. In contrast, this project develops an interactive research relationship between survivors and interviewers where survivors take greater ownership of the interpretation of their testimony and interviewers exercise greater latitude to engage actively with survivors and their stories. Since survivors have lived with memories of trauma for more than six decades, this study focuses on how trauma has been integrated into survivors' lives over the life course. Providing an innovative and collaborative way to gather, analyze, and present testimonies that shed light on survivors' post-war lives, this project contributes to the humanities by examining how testimonies document history and make sense of life-long trauma.