Research

Over the years I have worked on a variety of topics in the fields of modern Jewish, Holocaust and digital history.

I started out with Jewish folk music research for my master’s thesis in history at the University of Groningen (Netherlands). During my MA in Yiddish Studies at SOAS in London, a chance encounter with the topic of Jewish volunteers who fought in the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War led to another master’s thesis, and eventually led me to pursue a PhD at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. Published as a much revised book in 2017, this was a study on the nexus between Jewish migration and politics, with a focus on the engagement of Jews in the Left, and questions of identity, resistance and the construction of the postwar memory of former volunteers. I continued this work with comparative research on Jewish responses to fascism and anti-Semitism in Paris and London in the 1930s.

While in Göttingen between 2013-2017, I turned my attention to Holocaust history and the question of how egodocuments shape the constructon of its memory. At the Lichtenberg Kolleg for Advanced Studies, I was responsible for the annotations of a new critical scholarly edition of the diaries of Anne Frank and conducted research on Jews in hiding in the Netherlands.

Since joining C²DH in 2017, most of my research has focused on various aspects of digital history. I have a longstanding interest in the epistemological implications of using new technologies in historical research, in the present as well as the past. As for the present, I am especially interested in the politics of digitisation and digitised cultural heritage, seen from a global perspective. At the same time, I see this as but one aspect (a key one to be sure) of the much broader question of how technology has always shaped, framed and constrained historical research and thereby affected historical knowledge production.

My current research, envisaged as a new book project, thus explores the history and genealogies of digital history, set within the broader context of the ways in which technology has shaped historical research practices and knowledge production since the 19th century.