2010–11 Diane and Howard Wohl Fellow Dr. Hannah Starman
Hannah Starman is Visiting Research Fellow at Goldsmiths College at the University of London (United Kingdom). She received her Ph.D. and M.A. in international politics at the University of Wales Aberystwyth. For her Diane and Howard Wohl Fellowship, Dr. Starman is conducting research for her project, “Shoah and Its Aftermath in Slovenia: Towards a Holistic Interpretation of Central European Anti-Semitism.”
Dr. Starman is the author of a forthcoming book, Testifying to Trauma: The Codification of Atrocity in Humanitarian Law, and other publications including, “Generations of the Holocaust: Model for Intergenerational Transmission of Trauma” in Terrain, Revue d’Ethnologie d’Europe No. 53 (2010); “Slovenia” (in German) in Handbuch des Antisemitismus: Judenfeinschaft in Geschichte und Gegenwart (2008); “Mutilation of the Sexual Self: Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church” (in Slovenian) in Dnevnik Vol. 58 (2008); and “Esoteric Anti-Semitism” (in Slovenian) in Večer Vol. 60 (2005). Dr. Starman is the recipient of many grants, awards and fellowships, including a Research Grant from the World Jewish Restitution Organization (2006-2009), the International Collaborative Research Grant from The Wenner-Gren Foundation (2005-2007), a Conference organization grant from The Rothschild Foundation Europe (2006), and a Three-year Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Ministry of Science of the Republic of Slovenia (2004-2006). A native speaker of Slovenian, Dr. Starman is fluent in English and French with additional skills in Spanish, German, Serbo-Croatian, Italian, and Hebrew.
During her time at the Center, Dr. Starman is researching the Shoah in Slovenia and the cultural context that factors into the aftermath. Her research proposes to contextualize the testimonies on the specific traumatization survivors have suffered post World War II in Slovenian circumstances, and how this traumatization has been transmitted in culturally specific ways to their offspring. Her central hypothesis is that a society living in a class-like solidarity translated into categorical ethnic differences, socialization dysfunctions are generalized from basically dysfunctional family environments onwards. This unfolds psychologically and sociologically into a broader context of historic episodes of extreme mass violence, suspension of social functionality by means of authoritarian political power, insurmountable inner political and ideological divisions and, in the circumstances of the post-communism condition, the persistent inability of uncompromising denazification. Dr. Starman is utilizing the Museum’s extensive archival collections, including records from the International Tracing Service, to complete her research.