Works in Progress with Katie Parks

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Date: March 27, 2023
Time: 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: 5057 Woodward 10th floor, conference room 1030
5057 Woodward
Detroit, MI 48202
Category: Workshop

Please join the Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies Program for our next session of Works in Progress, a workshop series for graduate student research.

The series continues with Katie Parks, PhD Candidate in European History. Katie will share "Analyzing Representations of Gender in Public Spaces: A Study of Holocaust Museums in the United States."  

Description: Museums act as vectors of historical information to the public. As such, museums have a responsibility to consider their role in the creation and perpetuation of historical narratives. One way of assessing the transfer of historical knowledge is by analyzing museums, and for the purposes of this study, Holocaust museums throughout the United States. The Holocaust has become an epic example of not only the collection and transfer of memory, but the use of historical memory as a tool to learn from the past and enact change in the present. However, when we discuss the history and stories that illuminate the human experience during the Holocaust, whose stories are we talking about? My research explores how gender is represented within major Holocaust museums, and how these representations inform our understanding of the history of the Holocaust. This research will help us to better understand how the inclusion, or exclusion, of gendered narratives changes the way that the broader public receives and understands historical knowledge and ensures that future generations understand a fuller history of this catastrophic event and its implications on the world today.

About the series: The central goal of the workshop series is to help foster community support among graduate students with research and teaching interests in feminism, trans studies, and/or queer studies. 

The series is an opportunity for graduate students to share work at any stage of development, whether dissertation work, MA thesis work, seminar work, or presentation work—but genuine works in progress. The workshop is not focused on “finished products.” Instead, the series is an opportunity for students to share work among a peer community and request feedback that is most helpful, supportive, and motivating for the stage they are at.

The series, however, is not a substitute for the necessary work students do with their own departments, advisors, or committee members, nor, given the likely cross-disciplinary nature of the work shared, would the group always be able to address discipline-specific matters. The group would be, rather, a form of care and support for graduate students and their work, something akin to academic mutual aid. To paraphrase Frank O’Hara, we want to put our work between people instead of between pages.

March 2023