Discussion Seven: Give this a Try: Practicing Multidirectional Memory as an Approach to Study Collective Trauma

Note: For this question, a second post is optional. Drawing from the readings: Music of the Ghosts (Khmer Rouge atrocities and aftermath) and Pushing the Bear (Trail of Tears atrocities and aftermath)

Choose one of the following words or phrases to compare. Apply the word to both atrocities as described in the two readings (see more directions below). This comparison using one concept to join together the different experiences is at the heart of the method of multidirectional memory.


1. Compound trauma

2. Suffering and/or responses to suffering

3. Loss and mourning

4. Trauma’s impact on the family

5. Collective or community responses/coping to trauma

6. Traumascapes

7. Art responses to trauma

8. Intergenerational transmission of trauma

9. Collective memory

10. Another word or phrase from ETHS 318


For the second step:

1. First, define the word in terms of what it means in a trauma studies context.

2. Look at how that concept applies in each reading and atrocity.

3. Then, compare and contrast, look at similarities and differences.

4. Describe how that concept can be better understood after the comparison. How do we better understand the meaning of that trauma concept? What questions remain about that theme/concept?

5. Describe how the two atrocities can be better understood by applying that concept How do we better understand what happened and/or understand the aftermath? What questions remain about the atrocities and aftermath?

6. Cite the books using an academic formatting style (APA or MLA).

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