2007–08 Miles Lerman Center for the Study of Jewish Resistance Research Fellow Ms. Michal Aharony
Ms. Michal Aharony received an M.A. in political science (cum laude) and a B.A. in international relations from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. During her fellowship at the Museum, she was a Ph.D. candidate in political science at the New School for Research in New York City. For her Research Fellowship of the Miles Lerman Center for the Study of Jewish Resistance, Ms. Aharony conducted research and writing for her project “Total Domination: Between Conception and Experience: Rethinking the Arendtian Account through Holocaust Testimony.”
Ms. Aharony has worked as an adjunct instructor at Hofstra University; a research assistant at The Lauder School of Government, Policy and Diplomacy at the Inter-Disciplinary Center in Herzliya, Israel; and as a teaching and research assistant at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Ms. Aharony has received several fellowships and awards including a Research Assistance Stipend, University Fellowship, and tuition scholarships from the Graduate Faculty, New School for Social Research; and an award for academic excellence in M.A. Studies from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In addition to English, Ms. Aharony is fluent in Hebrew.
During her tenure at the Museum, Ms. Aharony engaged in a political-philosophical and historiographical interrogation of Hannah Arendt’s conception of total domination as presented in The Origin of Totalitarianism (1951). She examined “total domination” from the perspective of the victims, i.e., those who were actually subject to the totalitarian machinery. In order to do so, she relied upon survivors’ testimony, and analyzed texts by Primo Levi, Jean Améry, Imre Kertész, Charlotte Delbo, Tadeusz Borowski, and Jorge Semprum, among others.