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Trauma, Remembrance & Compassion

The 2022-23 colloquium explored remembrance as a social action that speaks back to the destructiveness and dehumanization of trauma, as well as how to hold space for and learn from past traumas. Click here to watch the events.

What is trauma? What does it mean to remember? What is compassion? The 2022-23 KHC-NEH colloquium, Trauma, Remembrance and Compassion, explored trauma, both historically and in our contemporary culture, and how remembrance and compassion both have and continue to offer meaningful responses to atrocities. If genocide and incarceration are crimes and practices that silence people and remove their humanity from them, then remembering is an act of restoration. It also sought to identify ways to respond to trauma through compassion, to consider how in the face of traumas, we can choose to act deliberately to alleviate suffering. In preserving the stories of those who have been dehumanized, we honor their suffering and affirm their humanity.  

The colloquium was organized by the 2022-23 KHC-NEH Faculty Fellows Dr. Angela Ridinger-Dotterman, Associate Professor of English; Dr. Ilse Schrynemakers, Associate Professor of English; Dr. Jodi Van Der Horn-Gibson, Associate Professor of Communication, Theatre and Media Production; and John Yi, Lecture in the Department of English at Queensborough Community College-CUNY.