The University of Virginia/Memory Studies Association Graduate Seminar

The Department of Sociology at the University of Virginia (USA) invites applications for an experimental “Graduate Seminar in Memory Studies” to be offered in Spring semester 2020. This seminar is supported by The Memory Project at the University of Virginia—part of The Democracy Initiative (— and the Memory Studies Association ( Participants will include graduate students from across different disciplines at UVa along with an approximately equal number of graduate students from around the world connected electronically to a specially equipped seminar room at the University of Virginia. The seminar will be led by Prof. Jeffrey Olick (, who is Director of the Memory Project at the University of Virginia and Co-President of the Memory Studies Association. The seminar will include guest lectures and discussions with leading figures in the field of memory studies, some delivered at UVa and some electronically. Topics will include the psychological, social, and cultural bases of memory; the sociology and politics of commemoration; memory in group, national, and transnational identities; postcolonial memory; cultural trauma; the ethics of memory; and issues in reparations, reconciliation, and transitional justice, among others.

The seminar will meet weekly for 14 weeks from late January through the first week of May according to the academic calendar of the University of Virginia ( Remote participants must have a stable and reliable internet connection, and, like resident students, commit to meeting the normal requirements of a graduate seminar at UVa, which include regular attendance, careful preparation/reading, active participation, and regular writing assignments. Students are expected to prepare for and participate actively in the seminar whether they are physically present or linked in electronically. The language of the seminar will be English, and all students must demonstrate proficiency in English before being accepted. All tuition and fees for remote students will be paid by The Memory Project. Students can receive academic credit from the University of Virginia or by special arrangement with their home institution, and will receive a certificate of completion from the Memory Studies Association. Additionally, The Memory Project will offer substantial travel subsidies for remote students who successfully complete the seminar to physically attend a workshop at the University of Virginia in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Memory Studies Association in Charlottesville (18-21 June 2020), the largest annual gathering of memory scholars worldwide.

Applications are welcome from any registered Ph.D. student from an accredited university, regardless of whether at the beginning of their program or nearing completion. A very limited number of Masters students may be eligible. Applications are welcome from any disciplinary background with a relevance to or interest in memory studies, including, but not limited to, sociology, anthropology, literary studies, philosophy, political science, international relations, art history, religious studies, psychology, history, media studies, and the like.
To apply, please send a letter of interest outlining your educational background and current affiliation, research interests and ambitions, reasons for applying, and commitment to meeting the requirements of the seminar to by Monday, December 2, 2019. While not strictly required, a letter of reference from your current advisor or other faculty member who knows you and your work will be very helpful. All inquiries should be sent to