Program: Conflict Studies
Office : GIG 325
Phone: 613-236-1393, ext.: 2249
Research Activities:Anna Sheftel joined the Conflict Studies Program in 2011, where she teaches at the undergraduate and graduate level. She is currently researching how Holocaust survivors remember and recount their experiences publicly, as well as the personal, social and political context of that remembering. Her doctoral dissertation, entitled The Construction of Formal and Informal Historical Narratives of Violence in North-Western Bosnia, World War II Until Present, employs oral history and document-based research to understand how contemporary Bosnians negotiate their memories of war within the contexts of local, ethnic and national narratives, all with their own politics. She has significant experience working on issues related to oral history methodology and ethics, having recently co-facilitated a SSHRC-funded international workshop, Off the Record: Unspoken Negotiations in the Practice of Oral History. She has also trained numerous people and organizations in this human-centred research practice, from community organizers in Montreal, to the research staff of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. She also founded H-Memory, the largest network of people working on scholarship in the inter-disciplinary field of Memory Studies. She is interested in the ways in which memories of violence are utilized, politicized, resisted, and subverted, and in how ordinary people experience, remember, and organize around situations of conflict.
Education:DPhil, History (expected), University of Oxford, Faculty of Modern History, 2011
MSc, Forced Migration, University of Oxford, Refugee Studies Centre, 2004
BA (Honours), Linguistics, Concordia University, Department of Classics, Modern Languages and Linguistics, 2003
Member of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
Courses taught:ECS 2111 Research Methods in Conflict Studies I
ECS 3130 Special Topics in Conflict Studies: Conflict and Memory
ECS 5131 Conflict Resolution: Analysis and Design
ECS 5531 Résolution des conflits : analyse et conception
Publications:Papers in Refereed Journals
1.Sheftel, A. ‘Monument to the International Community, From the Grateful Citizens of Sarajevo’: Dark Humour as Counter-Memory in Post-Conflict Bosnia-Herzegovina. Memory Studies. Forthcoming, 2012.
2.Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. ‘We Started Over Again, We Were Young’: Postwar Social Worlds of Child Holocaust Survivors in Montréal. Urban History Review. 39:1: 20-30, 2010.
3.Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. Only Human: A Reflection on the Ethical and Methodological Challenges of Working with ‘Difficult’ Stories. Oral History Review. 37:2: 191-241, 2010.
Major invited contributions and/or technical reports
1.Brantner, F and Sheftel, A. Gender, Conflict and Memory in the Mediterranean: Report. RAMSES2 Project, Oxford University. July 2007. Available online: www.sant.ox.ac.uk/esc/ramses/genderANDmemory.doc.
Abstracts and/or Papers Read
1.Sheftel, A. “Monument to the International Community, From the Grateful Citizens of Sarajevo": Dark Humour as Counter-Memory in Post-Conflict Bosnia-Herzegovina. Council for European Studies Annual Conference. Barcelona, 2011.
2.Sheftel, A. “We Have Too Much History Here, That Is Why We Have So Many Wars": Reflections on Value Judgements and Deeper Meanings in Interviewee Recruitment in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Canadian Historical Association Annual Conference. University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, 2011.
3.Sheftel, A. “I Don’t Fancy History Very Much": Reflections on Interviewee Recruitment and Refusal in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Off the Record: Unspoken Negotiations in the Practice of Oral History. Concordia University, Montréal, 2011.
4.Butler, D., Sheftel A., and Zembrzycki, S. Survivors and Education: Identity, Public Memory and Professionalized Narratives. XI Biennial Lessons and Legacies Conference. Holocaust Educational Foundation and Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, 2010.
5.Sheftel, A. Interpreting Alternative Forms of Counter-Memory in Post-Conflict Bosnia-Herzegovina. Invited to present at After Memory?: the methodological challenges of studying post-conflict society. Université de Montréal, Montréal, 2010.
6.Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. “We Started Over Again, We Were Young": Postwar Social Worlds of Child Holocaust Survivors in Montréal. Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association. Concordia University, Montréal, 2010.
7.Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. “We Created Our Own Social": The New World Club and Social Spaces Led by Holocaust Survivors in Postwar Montréal. Annual Meeting of the Association of Canadian Jewish Studies. Concordia University, Montréal, 2010.
8.Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. Negotiating the Past in the Present: Reflections on the Methodological Challenges of Life Story Research with Child Survivors of the Holocaust. The Future of Holocaust Testimonies: An International Conference and Workshop. Western Galilee College, Akko, Israel, 2010.
9.Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. Working with "Difficult" Stories: The Personal and the Political Challenges of Interviewing Survivors of Mass Violence. Remembering War, Genocide, and other Human Rights Violations: Oral History, New Media and the Arts International Conference. Concordia University, Montréal, 2009.
10.Sheftel, A. Psychosocial Support and Large-scale Oral History Projects: Lessons Learned from the Montréal Life Stories CURA Project. Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association. Carleton University, Ottawa, 2009.
11.Sheftel, A. (Re)Constructing a Post-Conflict Tourism in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Seventh Biennial Meeting of the International Association of Genocide Scholars. Sarajevo, 2007.
12.Sheftel, A. Inventing a Bosnian National Identity through School History Textbooks. New Approaches to Sources in World History Workshop. University of Oxford, Oxford, 2007.
13.Sheftel, A. Between Tito and the Tribunal: Bosnia-Herzegovina as a Case Study in the Redressing of Genocide, 1945-Present. American Historical Association Annual Meeting. Atlanta, 2007.
14.Sheftel, A. Agency and the Construction of Wartime Memory: How War Survivors Choose Historical Narratives in Bosnia-Herzegovina, 1945-Present. 31st Annual Great Lakes History Conference: New Perspectives on War and Society. Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids, 2006.
15.Sheftel, A. These Distorters of History: Problems at the Intersection of Formal and Informal Remembering in Northwest Bosnia, World War II–Present. Collective Memory and Uses of the Past: An Interdisciplinary Conference. University of East Anglia, Norwich, 2006.
16.Sheftel, A. The Oral Historical is Political: The Role of Individual and Local Memory in Understanding Conflict –Lessons from Northwest Bosnia. Rethinking War Colloquium. University of Kent, Canterbury, 2005.
1.Sheftel, A. Review: They Called Me Mayer July by Mayer Kirshenblatt and Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett. Oral History Forum. 29: 2009.
1.Sheftel, A. Djilas, Milovan. Entry in R. van Dijk, W. et al. (eds) The Encyclopedia of the Cold War. London: Routledge, 2008.
2.Sheftel, A. Tito, Josef Broz. Entry in R. van Dijk, W. et al. (eds) The Encyclopedia of the Cold War. London: Routledge, 2008.
3.Sheftel, A. Yugoslavia. Entry in R. van Dijk, W. et al. (eds) The Encyclopedia of the Cold War. London: Routledge, 2008.
4.Sheftel, A. Between Tito and the Tribunal: Bosnia-Herzegovina as a Case Study in the Redressing of Genocide, 1945-Present. Proceedings of the American Historical Association. Proquest: 2007.
Publications in Progress
1.IN PROGRESS: Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. (eds) Off the Record: Unspoken Negotiations in the Practice of Oral History. Palgrave Studies in Oral History.
2.UNDER REVIEW: Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. Professionalizing Survival: The Politics of Public Memory among Holocaust Survivor-Educators in Montréal. Submitted to eds. R. Crownshaw and A. Lichtblau (eds), Representing the Holocaust in the Age of Globalization (Transaction Press).
3.UNDER REVIEW: Sheftel, A. “I Don’t Fancy History Very Much": Reflections on Interviewee Recruitment and Refusal in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Ssubmitted to A. Sheftel and S. Zembrzycki (eds), Off the Record: Unspoken Negotiations in the Practice of Oral History (Palgrave).
Invited Lectures and Presentations
1.Sheftel, A. "The General Idea Was That We’d Never Make It": Holocaust Survivors at the Periphery and Centre of Montreal Jewish Life. Keynote lecture for students awards ceremony of Vered Canadian Jewish Studies Programme. University of Ottawa, 2011.
2.Sheftel, A. Surviving in Public: The Politics and Practice of Holocaust Survivor-Educators. Invited to present at meeting of National Task Force on Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research. Toronto, 2011.
3.Sheftel, A. and Zembrzycki, S. Postwar Experiences of Holocaust Survivors. Guest Lecture as part of Post-Confederation Canada undergraduate history course. Concordia University, 2010.
4.Cayouette Ashby, E. and Sheftel, A. Une éthique de recherche humaniste pour un projet d'histoire orale à grande échelle: Les leçons tirées du projet Histoires de vie Montréal. Invited to present at Éthique et recherches sur les patrimoines culturels : Un défi à relever. L’Institut du patrimoine, Université de Québec à Montréal, 2009.
5.Sheftel, A. Introduction to Oral History. Guest lecture as part of History and the Public undergraduate history course. Concordia University, 2009.