"From Victim Hierarchies to Memorial Networks: How Germany Remembers the Nazi Genocide of the Roma"
Dr. Nadine Blumer received her Ph.D. and M.A. in Sociology from the University of Toronto in Canada. Her doctoral research was funded in part by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Berlin Program for Advanced German and European Studies at the Freie Universität in Berlin, Germany. She is a native speaker of English with language skills in German, Romanian, and French. While in residence at the Center, Dr. Blumer worked on her project entitled, “From Victim Hierarchies to Memorial Networks: How Germany Remembers the Nazi Genocide of the Roma.”
Dr. Blumer has several publications, including a chapter in the edited volume, The Nazi Genocide of the Roma: Reassessment and Commemoration (Berghahn Books, 2013) and “‘Am Yisrael Chai! (The People of Israel Live!)’—Duelling Boundaries and Stark Reminders of Home in the Reproduction of Ethno-Diasporic Identity” in the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies (2011).
For her Cummings Foundation Fellowship, Dr. Blumer continued her research on German memory culture, specifically the ways in which the German state has addressed the Romani Holocaust. Her study focused on how the dominant status of the Jewish Holocaust in Germany’s historical narrative has both influenced and been influenced by the lesser-known Romani Holocaust. Since completing her doctoral dissertation in 2011, she plans to supplement the ethnographic field-work that she collected with other primary sources to expand on themes related to state redress and national commemoration of past violence. She used the Fojn-Felczer collection in the Museum’s digital archives, which holds documents regarding “Nazi legislation against Gypsies”, “Records Relating to the Treatment of Roma and Sinti (Gypsies) from the 1920s to 1960s”, and “Germany: German Newspaper Articles Concerning the Treatment of Romani, 1936-1984.” With these additional sources, Dr. Blumer plans to turn her dissertation into a book publication. Ultimately, she hopes to contribute one of the first comprehensive analyses of the Romani perspective on memory of the Holocaust and the way it cuts through the political and historical debates in Germany over commemoration of Jewish versus “other” victim groups.
Following completion of the Cummings Foundation Fellowship, Dr. Blumer will begin a two-year SSHRC postdoctoral fellowship at the Centre for Ethnographic Research and Exhibition in the Aftermath of Violence (CEREV) at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec. She will build on research interests in cultural memory and comparative genocide studies in a new project titled, "Virtual Multiculturalism: Curatorial Strategies and New Media at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights."
Dr. Blumer was in residence at the Mandel Center from June 1 to December 31, 2013.