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The Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies (VWI) organises academic events in order to provide the broader public as well as an expert audience with regular insights into the most recent research results in the fields of Holocaust, genocide, and racism research. These events, some of which extend beyond academia in the stricter sense, take on different formats ranging from small lectures to the larger Simon Wiesenthal Lectures and from workshops addressing an expert audience to larger international conferences and the Simon Wiesenthal Conferences. This reflects the institute’s wide range of activities.


The range of events further extends to the presentation of selected new publications on the institute’s topics of interest, interventions in the public space, the film series VWI Visuals, and the fellows’ expert colloquia.



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VWI invites/goes to...
Anna Menyhért: Trauma in the Digital Age. The Representation, Transmission, and Processing of Trauma on Social Media

Wednesday, 24. March 2021, 15:00 - 16:30



VWI goes to the Academy of Fine Arts

MenyhertSince the 2000s, social media networks have introduced major changes in the way people are regularly exposed to content related to the traumatic experiences of others (wars, catastrophes, individual disasters, violence, and rape). Social media provides information even in cases which mainstream (state-run) media do not cover. Exposure to traumatic content may have an unsettling effect on users, but social media is also used for processing trauma. This project investigates the representation, transmission, and processing of trauma – individual as well as collective, historical, and intergenerational – in the digital environment.

The project focusses on how each digital media platform shapes trauma-related communication according to their affordances. It draws on case studies linked to different social media platforms including Facebook groups related to the Holocaust; transnational migratory trauma in Hungarian migrants’ blogs; contemporary implications of the Treaty of Trianon as transmitted via YouTube; the resilience of gender-based trauma victims in connection with the #MeToo campaign on Twitter; and a comparative analysis of bystander behaviour during the Holocaust and in a digital context, including the study of cyberbullying on Facebook and Instagram.

This talk will discuss some examples of these case studies and will highlight the main theoretical pillars they draw on in order to draw tentative conclusions on how digital tools could help develop empathic approaches to the trauma of others.

Commented by Marina Gržinić

Anna Menyhért is Professor of Trauma Studies at the Budapest University of Jewish Studies. From 2016 to 2018, she was a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Research Fellow at the University of Amsterdam. Previously, she led the Trauma and Gender in Literature and Culture Research Group at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest. Her research interests include trauma studies, social media studies, memory studies, critical theory, and women’s writing.

Prof. Marina Gržinić is a philosopher, theoretician, and artist from Ljubljana, Slovenia. She serves as a professor and research adviser. Since 2003, she is a professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. She is the project leader of the FWF-PEEK-Project “Genealogy of Amnesia: Rethinking the Past for a New Future of Conviviality” (AR 439) during the period 2018–2021. She edited the volume Border Thinking. Disassembling Histories of Racialized Violence, Vienna 2018.

Click here to download the invitation as PDF file.

In cooperation with: 
Academy of fine arts

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