The Drawing Board is pleased to announce that our very own, Nakita Valerio, has been selected as a recipient for the Frank W Peers Graduate Research Scholarship. The award is highly competitive (only one is awarded to history graduate students annually), based on excellent academic standing and research potential. The award comes with significant financial assistance which will be used to fund her studies in Edmonton and research abroad.
The tentative title of her thesis is: Remembering Al-Yehud Through the Shoah: Pedagogical Approaches to Teaching the Holocaust and Jewishness Among Contemporary Moroccan Muslims
A summary of her research is what follows:
The Holocaust is a provocative measure of the Muslim memory of Jews. Though it is considered the starting point in Critical Memory studies, there is yet to be much scholarship devoted to its memory in the Islamic world. An intimate history of relatively peaceful coexistence between Moroccan Jews and Muslims has been challenged in a comparatively short time by narratives of nationalism and diaspora, the Israeli occupation of Palestine, their economic-trade policy, the rhetoric regarding normalization of Israel, and educational protocols surrounding the constructed memory of Jews in Morocco. My working research questions are as follows: How is the Holocaust remembered by self-identified Moroccan Muslims? How is this affected by education, politics and self-prescribed ideas about the “Islamic and Jewish religions”? How does this affect overall remembering of Jews in Morocco? These questions are situated in the context of Memory literature and are used to understand how societies reconcile multi-layered cognitive dissonance.