Student: Emily Beuter
Majors: History, Spanish
Advisors: Dr. Katie Holt, Dr. Cynthia Palmer
As Chileans continue to struggle with reconciling with their past in post-dictatorial Chile, this same struggle plays out in the classroom with the teaching of the dictatorship and human rights. While there is a vast corpus on memory historiography and pedagogy literature, researchers have overlooked the role of teaching in memory formation and the perspectives of those actively forming student memory. This study analyzes how various spheres of education on the dictatorship and human rights reflect larger societal tensions and are themselves spheres of contested memory. Further, I argue for complexity as there are numerous educational spheres who are in dialogue with one another that contribute to the creation of a collective memory. This study builds on existing scholarship through nine, first-hand interviews with Chileans who are involved in the education of the dictatorship and human rights. The interviews fit into three categories which shape the format of my study: the secondary school classroom, the world of academia and university teacher training, and other experiential spheres of memory formation. This study goes beyond just looking at curriculum and instead provides valuable qualitative research and the perspectives of educators who are actively forming memory. As Chile continues to construct a memory, educators face real challenges from the changing political environment but also have the opportunity in shaping the memory for the next generation. Memory education can be transformative, creating active participants in society who demand for change.
Emily will be online to field comments on May 8:
10am-noon EDT (Asia: late evening, PST 6am-8am, Africa/Europe: late afternoon)