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Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:University of Chicago
  • Jennifer Cole
  • (773) 702-4235
  • Zoe E Berman
Award Date:01/13/2020
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 25,200
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 25,200
  • FY 2020=$25,200
Start Date:04/01/2020
End Date:06/30/2021
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.075
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:Doctoral Dissertation Research: Intergenerational Memory Practices and Social Transformation
Federal Award ID Number:1948744
DUNS ID:005421136
Parent DUNS ID:005421136
Program:Cult Anthro DDRI
Program Officer:
  • Jeffrey Mantz
  • (703) 292-7783

Awardee Location

Street:6054 South Drexel Avenue
Awardee Cong. District:01

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:University of Chicago
Street:1126 E. 59th St.
Cong. District:01

Abstract at Time of Award

Over the past several decades, intergenerational memory and trauma have become key terms in debates about post-conflict recovery. Originally conceptualized as an experience so shocking it cannot be integrated into a subject's conscious memory, trauma now refers to extra-ordinarily painful experiences, or wounds to memory, which profoundly shape both collective and individual identity. Victims of violence and their descendants have mobilized both psychological and neurobiological arguments about trauma to gain social recognition, as well as access psychosocial and material resources. However, commonsense understandings of intergenerational memory and trauma are largely based on a narrow set of paradigmatic studies of mass-violence. This project tests whether that selection bias impedes the efficacy of those claims. In addition to providing funding for the training of a graduate student in anthropology in the methods of empirical, scientific data collection and analysis, the project would enhance scientific understanding by broadly disseminating its findings to organizations invested in the use of evidence-based media production to understand and inform post-crisis community interventions. Zoe Berman, under the supervision of Dr. Jennifer Cole of the University of Chicago will explore whether, and if so, to what extent, different sociohistorical conditions shape the ways in which memories and trauma are experienced and shared. How do understandings of historic violence, mental health, and social difference evolve after conflict? What practices enable individual and collective resolution after violence, and how do these practices change over time? The researcher will explore such questions through an ethnographic investigation of intergenerational memory practices, trauma, and social antagonism in a post-conflict context. Over 15 months, using a range of ethnographic and linguistic techniques of data collection and analysis (including interviews, participant observation, archival analysis, and collaborative interpretation), she will track the work of official and unofficial memory practices within and across three multi-generational youth-focused organizations, as well as in popular media and at the level of policy. Exploring how memories and trauma are evoked and made relevant to different contexts, the researcher will investigate whether a range of normative and structural social relationships are reproduced or re-imagined through practices of remembering. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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