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Colt 7 First Year Seminar

 Aguado (10A)

Haunting Memories: The Holocaust and Its Representations

How do we deal with painful memories from the Holocaust? Will we be able to represent them, to cope and to learn from them, and to appease their haunting effects, perhaps to put them aside once and for all, without forgetting? Can we remember extreme experiences like those coming from Holocaust survivors without being engulfed by the horrors they portray? We will be reading texts by Wiesel, Levi, Kertész, Semprún, Améry, Sebald, and works by critical thinkers like Adorno, Agamben, Butler, Todorov, Finkielkraut, and Bauman. In a continent where war, exile, extermination, and political and cultural repression have been so pervasive over the centuries, one way of grounding a new European project for the future could be based on the full acknowledgement of the unavoidable historical legacy of the Holocaust. Europeans must place at their center the unforgettable memories of the shared atrocities of the European experience. These memories, this willingness to make the horrors of past part of today's projects, will imply the effort to construct an idea of Europe with the ashes of what has been most essential to the continent up to our times, as the indispensable tool that diverts us from the road leading to extermination and the concentration camp.  (INT/TMW/W)

Last Updated: 3/28/14