Bearing Witness: Laura Levitt on The Objects That Remain

THU, OCT 1, 2020 (1:21:19)

“The Objects That Remain” is Laura Levitt’s memoir and examination of the ways in which the material remains of violent crimes inform our thinking about trauma and loss. Considering artifacts in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and evidence in police storage facilities across the country, Levitt’s story moves between intimate trauma, the story of an unsolved rape, and genocide. She asks what it might mean to do justice to these violent pasts outside the justice system or through historical accounts.

This talk is the first in a trilogy of women storytellers convened by Ford Hall Forum, the country’s oldest public forum. Laura Levitt, author of “The Objects That Remain,” is a professor of Religion, Jewish Studies, and Gender at Temple University. Moderator Barbara Abrams is associate professor in the World Languages and Cultural Studies Department at Suffolk University.

+ BIO: Barbara Abrams

Professor Abrams’ is the Director of the Global and Cultural Studies Major Program. Her work focuses on Global and Cultural Studies, French literature of the Enlightenment and Women’s and Gender Studies. Her most recent work includes an archival research project titled ReSisters which examines women cloistered against their will in 18th century France, and a multi-graph book titled Reframing Rousseau’s Le Lévite d’Ephraïm: The Hebrew Bible, Hospitality, and Modern Identity. Her book, Le Bizarre and Le Décousu in the Novels and Theoretical Works of Denis Diderot: How the Idea of Marginality Originated in Eighteenth-Century France, examines the background of our modern concept of marginality by focusing on Diderot’s materialist philosophy. Professor Abrams is the academic liaison for the Suffolk/CAVILAM intensive French program in Vichy, France and the student exchange program at the Catholic University of Lille.

+ BIO: Laura Levitt

Laura Levitt is a Professor of Religion, Jewish Studies and Gender at Temple University where she has chaired the department of Religion and served as director of both the Women’s Studies and the Jewish Studies Programs.

She is the author of American Jewish Loss after the Holocaust (2007) and Jews and Feminism: The Ambivalent Search for Home (1997). She is an editor of Judaism Since Gender (1997) and Impossible Images: Contemporary Art after the Holocaust (2003).

Ford Hall Forum
Beyond Borders: Women's Stories and the Art of Bearing Witness