“Facets of Return: Aspects of the Survival and Refashioning of Family Life by Eastern European Jews in the Displaced Persons Camps, America, and Canada, 1945-1960”
Ms. Amy Smith is currently a PhD candidate at Yale University (US), where she is a joint candidate in the Judaic Studies Program of the Religious Studies Department and the History Department. She is researching and writing her dissertation, “Facets of Return: Aspects of the Survival and Refashioning of Family Life by Eastern European Jews in the Displaced Persons Camps, America, and Canada, 1945-1960.” Her language skills include Hebrew, German, Yiddish, and French.
Ms. Smith has presented the following papers at conferences: “Attitudes of American Soldiers towards Jewish Displaced Persons in Postwar Europe” Association for Jewish Studies 43rd Annual Conference, Washington, D.C., December 2011; “Changing Narrative Constructions of Traumatic Memory by Survivors: A Case Study of Leon Weliczker Wells,” Beyond Testimony and Trauma: Oral History in the Aftermath of Mass Violence, Montreal, Canada, March 2012; “The Family Life of Holocaust Survivors in Displaced Persons Camps, the United States, and Israel between 1945 and 1960,” Association for Jewish Studies 44th Conference, Chicago, December 18, 2012; “Emotional Dynamics in the Narrative Construction of Memory by Holocaust Survivors: A Case Study of Leon Weliczker Wells,” The Aftermath of Genocide: Victims and Perpetrators, Representations and Interpretations, 10th Biennial Conference of the International Association for Genocide Studies, Siena, Italy, June 19-22, 2013; and “Holocaust Survivors and the Use of Ad-hoc Networks in the Search for Family,” Association for Jewish Studies 45th Annual Conference, Boston, December 17, 2013.
Ms. Smith was an intern in 2004 for Traveling Exhibitions at the USHMM and was a participant in the Museum’s Jack and Anita Hess Seminar for Faculty, “Teaching about the Holocaust through Eyewitness Testimony: Using Interviews and Memoirs in the Classroom,” in 2011. She was also a participant in the USHMM/NYU Summer Research Workshop entitled Exploring the Plight and Path of Jewish Refugees, Survivors, and Displaced Persons in 2012, as well part of the American Academy for Jewish Research Graduate Student Seminar in the summer of that same year. She spent the 2012-2013 academic year as the Lillian Goldman Fellow at the Center for Jewish History in New York City.
For her Ben and Zelda Cohen Fellowship, Ms. Smith conducted research for her project, “Facets of Return: Aspects of the Survival and Refashioning of Family Life by Eastern European Jews in the Displaced Persons Camps, America, and Canada, 1945-1960.”
Ms. Smith was in-residence at the Mandel Center from October 1 to December 30, 2013.