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Zumkehr Lectures

Scholars from a number of disciplines examine the ways in which our understanding of the past continues to shape our present and future. From memorials to museums to popular media, the meaning of the past is continuously revised and revisited. Learn how some of the world’s top public memory scholars approach their work in the videos below.

Dr. Nicola Cloete
University of the Witswaterstrand (South Africa)

“Digestible Memories in South Africa’s Recent Past: Processing the Slave Lodge Museum and the Memorial to the Enslaved”

Dr. Nicola Cloete is Senior Lecturer in the Department of History of Art & Heritage Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand. Born in South Africa she completed an undergraduate degree in Dramatic Art at Wits University, a Master’s degree in Gender Culture and Politics at Birkbeck College, London and worked in academia, and television as a researcher before returning to Wits to take up a position in the Wits School of Arts. She completed her PhD in Political Studies at Wits University.

Dr. Cloete’s research and teaching focus on an interdisciplinary approach to visual and cultural studies with a specific emphasis on memory studies, slavery in South Africa, and gender and race theories as they pertain to the politics of representation. Her recent research examines the memory politics in representations of slavery in post-Apartheid South Africa. She is currently writing a book, supported by the Advancing Humanities Grant, called Holding Memory: Slavery and Post-Apartheid Cultural production. Dr Cloete was awarded the Harvard South Africa Fellowship (2011-2012) and serves of the editorial board of academic journals, African Studies and De Arte.

This lecture was given at Ohio University in recognition of Dr. Cloete being named the winner of the 2022 Zumkehr Prize in Public Memory Scholarship. The lecture is based on her prize-winning article, “Digestible Memories in South Africa’s Recent Past: Processing the Slave Lodge Museum and the Memorial to the Enslaved,” which was published in the International Journal of Heritage Studies.

Dr. Stephen P. Hanna
University of Mary Washington

“Following the Story: Narrative Mapping the Guided Tours of Virginia’s Presidential Plantation Museums”

Dr. Stephen P. Hanna is Professor of Geography at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia, and the Cartography Editor for the American Association of Geographers.  His current research focuses on the ways commemorative landscapes and their present meanings are created and reproduced through both practice and representation  As a Research Fellow with the Race, Ethnicity and Social Equity in Tourism (RESET) initiative, he works to document and theorize the exclusion or marginalization of Black Americans within heritage tourism spaces, including plantation museums, and to make reparative interventions at these sites. He is the co-author of Remembering Enslavement: Reassembling the Southern Plantation Museum (University of Georgia Press) and the author or co-author of over 40 journal articles, book chapters, and research reports. His essays and maps have appeared in The Washington Post, The Conversation, The New Republic, Daily Kos, and other newspapers and magazines.

This lecture was given at Ohio University in recognition of Dr. Hanna and his co-authors (Perry L. Carter, Amy E. Potter, Candace Forbes Bright, Derek A. Alderman, E. Arnold Modlin, and David L. Butler) being named the winners of the 2020 Zumkehr Prize in Public Memory Scholarship. The lecture is based in part on their prize-winning article in the Journal of Heritage Tourism, “Following the Story: Narrative Mapping as a Mobile Method for Tracking and Interrogating Spatial Narratives.”

Dr. Ñusta Carranza Ko

University of Baltimore

“South Korea’s Collective Memory of Past Human Rights Abuses”

Dr. Ñusta Carranza Ko is an Assistant Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Baltimore. She is the author of Truth, Justice, Reparations in Peru, Uruguay, and South Korea: The Clash of Advocacy and Politics (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2021), co-author of Theories of International Relations and the Game of Thrones (Lanham: Lexington Books, 2019), and has also published several articles and chapters in memory and genocide studies. Her research focuses on transitional justice in Latin America and Asia, historical women’s rights violations in Korea, and Indigenous peoples’ rights in Peru. She is of Indigenous (Quechua-speaking peoples from the Northern Andes of Peru) and Korean descent. 

This lecture was given at Ohio University in recognition of Dr. Carranzo Ko being named the winner of the 2021 Zumkehr Prize in Public Memory Scholarship. The lecture is based on her prize-winning article in Memory Studies, “South Korea’s Collective Memory of Past Human Rights Abuses.”

Dr. Patricia Davis
Northeastern University

"African American Memory Practices, Negotiation, and the Politics of Identity"

Dr. Patricia Davis is an Associate Professor of Communication Studies at Northeastern University. Her book, Laying Claim: African American Cultural Memory and Southern Identity (University of Alabama Press, 2016), which analyzes African American memory practices and expressions of identity, was the recipient of Outstanding Book awards from the National Communication Association in 2017 and 2018. Her work on African American memory foregrounds gender, performance, space and place, visuality, and materiality, as well as the poetics and politics of  representation. She is presently working on a book that traces the history of African American political and civic elite discourses regarding black women’s public images, with a specific focus on rhetorics of black citizenship during the Jim Crow era.   

In this presentation, Dr. Davis discusses the challenges African American memory practices present to the “common-sense” assumptions of whiteness and American exceptionalism. In discussing these challenges, she poses the following questions: In what ways does our contemporary moment open up new possibilities for coming to terms with the tensions inherent in African American memory and racial and national identities? What might these possibilities portend for the future?

Dr. Kendall Phillips
Syracuse University

"Rhetorical Approaches to Difficult Memories"

Dr. Kendall R. Phillips is Professor of Communication and Rhetorical Studies at Syracuse University where he also serves as founding co-director of the Lender Center for Social Justice. He holds a Ph.D. from Penn State University and currently has visiting appointments at York St. John University (U.K.) and Massey University (New Zealand). His work focuses on rhetoric and popular culture with particular interest in controversies over film and public memory. He has published several books, including A Place of Darkness: The Rhetoric of Horror in Early American Cinema (2018), Controversial Cinema: The Films that Outraged America (2008), and Framing Public Memory (2004). His essays have appeared in such journals as Quarterly Journal of SpeechPhilosophy & Rhetoric, and Critical Studies in Media Communication. He is co-editor of two book series: “Rhetoric, Politics, and Society” (Palgrave Macmillan) and “Horror and Monstrosity Studies” (University Press of Mississippi).

Dr. Teresa Bergman
University of the Pacific 

"Commemoration and Diversity"

Dr. Teresa Bergman, Professor and Chair of the Department of Communication at the University of the Pacific, studies the changing representations of patriotism, nationalism, citizenship, and gender in the films and exhibits in public memory sites. She incorporates an interdisciplinary methodology that includes rhetoric, documentary film theory, museum studies, memory studies, and critical/cultural studies. She has published two books on public memory, Exhibiting Patriotism: Creating and Contesting Interpretations of American Historic Sites and The Commemoration of Women in the United States: Remembering Women in Public Space.

Dr. Bergman’s lecture responds to a question she has been asked following the publication of her two books: "What themes did she notice in our commemorative practices?" That question, she explains, can best be answered by asking a set of other questions: “Who gets commemorated? Which wars get commemorated? What other events get commemoration? Who decides? Where does commemoration take place?” Her focus in this lecture is to “tell three stories about how the meaning of three different sites of public memory evolved over the years, and how issues concerning context and diversity fueled these changes.”

Dr. Barry Schwartz
University of Georgia

"Collective Memory"

Dr. Barry Schwartz, Professor Emeritus of Sociology, University of Georgia, is author of numerous articles and seven books, including Abraham Lincoln and the Forge of National Memory, which traces popular images of Lincoln from 1865 to 1922.  His second volume, Abraham Lincoln in the Post-Heroic Era: History and Memory in the Late Twentieth Century, tracks Lincoln’s images from the Depression decade to the turn of the twenty-first century.  He is presently working on The Gettysburg Address in American Memory, a treatment of  the drastically changing meanings attributed to Lincoln’s eulogy.  Throughout this work on collective memory appear common themes: conflict and consensus, continuity and change, the past as it was and the past as remembered, and the enduring need of individuals to find orientation and meaning for their lives by invoking, embracing, rejecting, revising, and judging the past. 

Dr. Ekaterina (Katya) Haskins
Pennsylvania State University

“The City of Victors”

Dr. Ekaterina (Katya) Haskins, Professor of Communication Arts and Studies at Pennsylvania State University, studies rhetoric as an intellectual and pedagogical tradition and a practice that shapes individual and collective identities. Her research contributes to three distinct yet related areas of scholarship: the history of rhetoric, public memory, and rhetorics of display. She is the author of two books, Logos and Power in Isocrates and Aristotle (2004; paperback 2009) and Popular Memories: Commemoration, Participatory Culture, and Democratic Citizenship (2015). She has published numerous articles and book chapters on the history of rhetoric, public memory, and visual culture. Her current projects include a book-in-progress on the rhetoric and politics of public memory in post-Communist Russia and an investigation of the role of place and sensation in public life.

Dr. Patrick Hagopian
Lancaster University (UK)

"Contentious Memories: Confederate Memorials"

Dr. Patrick Hagopian is Senior Lecturer in the History Department at Lancaster University. After a BA in American Studies at the University of Sussex, Hagopian did graduate work at the Annenberg School of Communications, University of Pennsylvania (MA, Communications) and at Johns Hopkins University (PhD, History). He was a postdoctoral fellow at the College of William and Mary and has enjoyed pre-doctoral and senior fellowships at the Smithsonian Institution.

Dr. Hagopian’s works include The Vietnam War in American Memory (2009) and American Immunity: War Crimes and the Limits of International Law (2013). He is working on a monograph on Command Criminal Responsibility and the My Lai Massacre. On completing it, he plans to return to his major project about memorials on the Washington, DC, Mall.

Dr. Derek Alderman
University of Tennessee

"Martin Luther King Jr. Streets as Unfinished Civil Rights Work"

Dr. Derek H. Alderman is a Professor of Geography at the University of Tennessee, where he is also the Betty Lynn Hendrickson Professor of Social Science. He is a Past President of the American Association of Geographers (AAG) and the former Head of the Department of Geography at Tennessee. Dr. Alderman is a cultural and historical geographer specializing in race, commemorative landscapes, heritage tourism, and critical place name study—all within the context of the African-American Freedom Struggle. He is the author of over 140 articles, book chapters, and other essays along with the award-winning book (with Owen Dwyer), Civil Rights Memorials and the Geography of Memory.  Dr. Alderman is perhaps best known for advancing scholarly and public understanding of the politics of naming streets after Martin Luther King, Jr. His work on MLK streets was recently highlighted at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee as part the 50th anniversary observance of Dr. King’s assassination. Over the years, Dr. Alderman has provided assistance to many elected officials, planners, and activists from across the country about Martin Luther King streets. He frequently moves beyond the academy to contribute to the national dialogue on commemorative and cultural issues. He has been interviewed or quoted over 220 times in print, radio and television media outlets, including CNNMSNBCThe New York TimesCityLabThe Washington PostUSA TodayEbonyThe GuardianBBC Radio News, and on NPR’s 1AMorning Edition, and Marketplace.

Dr. Jocelyn Martin
Ateneo de Manila University (Philippines)

"The Prospect of a Filipino Memory Studies"

Dr. Jocelyn Martin teaches in the English Department of the Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines, where she is also Managing Editor of its Thomson-Reuter-indexed journal, Kritika Kultura. Her research interests include Memory and Trauma Studies, Postcolonial Studies, Translation Studies, Environmental Humanities and Political Listening. Her essays have appeared in several scholarly journals such as the International Journal of Politics, Culture and Society and Philippine Studies. Her book chapters are forthcoming in Routledge. Her current monograph project examines fiction within the context of the extrajudicial killings in the Philippines. A holder of a PhD in languages and literatures from the Université Libre de Bruxelles, she publishes in English and French; speaks in Filipino and Italian; reads in Spanish; and possesses some German and Chinese. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the Memory Studies Association.

Dr. Stef Craps
Ghent University (Belgium)

"Climate Change and the Art of Anticipatory Memory"

Dr. Stef Craps is a Professor of English Literature at Ghent University in Belgium, where he directs the Cultural Memory Studies Initiative. His research interests lie in twentieth-century and contemporary literature and culture, memory and trauma studies, postcolonial theory, and ecocriticism and environmental humanities. He is the author of Postcolonial Witnessing: Trauma Out of Bounds (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) and Trauma and Ethics in the Novels of Graham Swift: No Short-Cuts to Salvation (Sussex Academic Press, 2005), a co-author of Trauma (Routledge, 2020), and a co-editor of Memory Unbound: Tracing the Dynamics of Memory Studies (Berghahn, 2017). Craps is a co-founder and the coordinator of the Mnemonics network, an international collaborative initiative for graduate education in memory studies, and serves on the executive committee of the Memory Studies Association.

In this lecture, Dr. Craps explores the preoccupation with anticipatory memory in many literary and cultural responses to climate change. He argues that the pervasiveness of the figure of the future historian who looks back on today’s world is no accident, as the anticipation of retrospection that he or she embodies is crucial to the self-understanding of our age, the Anthropocene epoch. Furthermore, Craps contends that the phenomenon of anticipatory memory ties in with recent developments in the field of memory studies: the wish to make memory relevant to the present and the future evident in much work on the globalization of Holocaust memory as well as in attempts to cast mourning as a political act.