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Biography

Suzan Meryem Rosita is a trained archivist and historian working on Genocide and Holocaust discourse in Turkey. Having previously studied at Bogazici University and the University of Cambridge, she is now completing her doctoral dissertation at the European University Institute (Florence). She is especially interested in the concept of historical silence and the different modes of cultural memory but her work is now evolving into the direction of trauma, post-genocidal memory and the representation of genocide in Western-Armenian and Turkish literary works.

Among other awards, she has received the Paul Harris Fellowship by Rotary International for her humanitarian work in Nepal (2002) and most recently the Raphael Lemkin Fellowship by the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute in Yerevan (2014).

She was the first scholar from Turkey to receive this award and  frequently appeared on Armenian TV and radio programmes discussing the Turkish government’s denial of the Armenian Genocide. Watch and read selected live interviews here: Radio LibertyAzatutyun RadiokayanArmenian Genocide Museum Institute Yerevan, Armpress.

She has also received the Hrant Dink Foundation Award as supported by the Turkey-Armenia Fellowship Scheme (2014/2015). During her Hrant Dink fellowship, Suzan had the opportunity to spend one semester in Armenia, where she published and performed The Silent Book; staged the theatre play ‘He said Yes, He said No’ (adapted from B. Brecht’s original play) together with a group of artists and actors from Armenia, Turkey and Syria; and was interviewed for and appeared in the documentaries Common Grounds (2014) and After this Day (2015).

In the past four years, she has initiated reading groups with Armenian, Turkish and Syrian students. The groups read and discussed Western Armenian poetry and literary works, graphic novels and canonical texts. These reading groups engaged in lively discussions and debates on the aftermath of war, trauma and historical justice.

Currently, she is writing an essay on the subject of “Why War” discussing the relentless repetition of the past in our present times while also considering how digital technologies have changed how we view and experience war.

Of great concern is also the situation of academics in Turkey. Please support fellow colleagues, students, and academics from Turkey.