Registration for the following event can be found at this link.

Memory Wars and Memory Work: Relational Remembrance in Pınar Öğrenci’s Aşît [The Avalanche]

During the last few years, a series of acrimonious debates has taken place in Germany about Holocaust memory, antisemitism, and Israel/Palestine. In one of the most visible of those disputes, an enormous scandal rocked the 2022 Documenta 15 international art exhibit in Kassel. Set against the backdrop of Documenta, this lecture will review the recent memory wars in Germany and then turn to a work that was displayed at Documenta but was not part of the controversy swirling around the exhibit: Pınar Öğrenci’s film Aşît [The Avalanche]. This film, which concerns the tangled histories of violence directed against Armenians and Kurds in a remote town in eastern Turkey, does not address the terms of the German debate directly. However, as Rothberg will argue, in weaving together multiple histories of exile, trauma, and catastrophe, Aşît offers a mode of relational remembrance that suggests alternative possibilities for coming to terms with the past in contemporary Germany—and beyond.

Following his lecture, Prof. Rothberg will be joined in conversation by Prof. Sonali Thakkar of NYU, whose work focuses on postcolonial literature and theory and anticolonial thought and politics. A reception will conclude the evening.


This event is free and open to the public. Please register to reserve your spot.

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