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Wadood Ibrahim, Bryan Schwartz, Jeremy Maron, Howard Morry on Raul Wallenberg day at Gray Academy
Gray Academy of Jewish Education


by Rhonda Spivak June 4, 2013

Dr. Jeremy Maron is the lead researcher-curator for the Holocaust gallery and Breaking the Silence gallery of the Canadian Human Rights Museum.

As Maureen Fitzhenry, media spokesperson for the CMHR confirmed in an email to the Winnipeg Jewish Review, “He has been in this lead role since November 2012, formerly working closely with Dr. Curle as a CMHR research assistant in the same areas. However, like all of the researcher-curators, Dr. Meron is also part of the team that is working to develop all of our exhibits."

On September 21, 2011, Maron was first hired as Research Assistant to Dr. Clint Curle on September 21, 2011. [Dr. Curle is now Manager of Stakeholder Relations for the CMHR.]

Maron, who was born in 1980, has a Ph.D. in Cultural Mediations from The Institute for Comparative Studies in Literature, Art and Culture at Carleton University. As the Institute’s website explains, Cultural Mediations is an “ interdisciplinary doctoral program” that is “ designed to advance knowledge and understanding of that body of cultural theory and those cultural practices that inform literary studies, cinema studies and work in music, art history and new media, along with the historical, intellectual and social frames of reference that this work invokes.”

A post dated Sept 21, 2011 on the website of the Institute indicated that “Jeremy recently defended his dissertation, which looked at the treatment of the Holocaust in Canadian Cinema. At the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, Jeremy will be researching, organizing and contextualizing materials to be used in the various exhibits in the galleries devoted to genocide and other mass atrocities.”

In his Linked In Profile,, Maron describes his dissertation entitled "Unbridgeable Barriers: The Holocaust in Canadian Cinema" saying "This project argues that Canadian films have approached the Holocaust indirectly, positing it as an inaccessible object of representation rather than attempting represent the historicity of the event. The defence committee accepted the dissertation "as submitted," and nominated me for a University Senate Medal. Over the course of this project, I gained significant experience in a wide variety of research methods, including archival research, oral history interviews, and institutional research (i.e. museums, specialized and private libraries, etc.)"

Maron has a Masters in Film Studies from Carleton University. As he says in his LinkedIn Profile, "My Master's level thesis was entitled "Illusions of Gardens, Conformity and Beauty: Performing Normality in Three Italian Holocaust Films," for which I earned "Distinction." It is a study of how Italian cinema evades the horror of the Holocaust in a manner that reflexively mimics the evasion of the nation's role as a WWII ally of Nazi Germany in Italy's postwar period."

In 2009 as an Instructor in Film Studies at Carleton, Maron created and taught two original courses in Carleton's Film Studies Department: 1) Film and the Holocaust; and 2) Film in Canada Beyond the Canon.
Meron studied at the University of Manitoba from 1998-2002 where he received a Bachelor of Arts, Film Studies, Business.

Maron has four publications. He has published an article entitled " Affective Historiography: Schindler’s List, Melodrama and Historical Representation" published in Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies 27.4 (Summer 2009). He has an article in Holocaust Studies: A Journal of Culture and History 15.3 (Winter 2009) entitled “Bringing the Psychological Past into the Physical Present: The Formal and Narrative Emergence of Traumatic Memory in Sidney Lumet’s The Pawnbroker.”

Maron has also co-authored a book with Andre Loiselle entitled Stages of Reality: Theatricity in Cinema (University of Toronto Press), and has published an article in CineAction 76 (2009) National Reconciliation and its Performative Limitations: John Boorman’s In My Country and Fanta Regina Nacro’s Night of Truth.”

Maron describes his work as Curator  in his  Linked In Profile saying "I am responsible for conceiving and proposing exhibit and gallery approaches and producing content packages in order to facilitate content development. I am also responsible for providing content direction as the exhibits move from concept to fabrication, as well as offering content expertise to departments across the museum."

He adds, "I am excited to be pursuing a career that directly relates to my area of study, and to have a small role in the establishment of an institution that is by far the most significant cultural development happening right now in Canada."

The website of the Institute for Comparative Studies in Literature, Art and Culture at Carleton University describes Maron’s dissertation on the Holocaust in Canadian Cinema, entitled “Unbridgeable Barriers” in fuller detail. It is described as follows:

“It argues that Canadian films have emphasized experiential barriers that challenge the Holocaust’s representation within a Canadian context. At the broadest level these barriers function historically, manifesting the geographic distance between Canada and the Holocaust during World War II (WWII). More commonly, Canadian films enact these barriers at the interpersonal level via emotional or cognitive barriers between individuals who experienced the Holocaust (i.e. survivors who have moved to Canada) and those who did not (i.e. Canadians surrounding the survivors who lack the experience to understand their past).

"Chapter One establishes absence as a central problematic for Canadian Holocaust cinema. It pays particular attention to films that focus on Canada’s WWII history, which does not (at least easily) include a confrontation with the Holocaust. Chapter Two considers the legacy of these historical barriers on an individual level through films that feature troubled relations between survivors and specifically Canadian socio-political contexts. Chapter Three looks at films that imply the invisibility of the barriers around Canadian survivors, which localizes the Holocaust squarely in their experiential memory, and thus renders it absent outside of them.

"Chapter Four shifts focus to films that aim to “resolve” this barrier by making the Holocaust present outside the individual experiences of survivors – first by emphasizing the shared quality of the Holocaust experience amongst groups of survivors, and second by documenting the return of survivors to the spaces of their past. Chapter Five concentrates on films that also aim to efface the barrier of experience, but through the process of those lacking a direct experience of the Holocaust appropriating an experiential perspective.

"The final chapter looks at films by Jack Kuper, a Holocaust survivor from Toronto. Kuper’s films posit a clear division between himself looking back on an event that he experienced, and the event itself. By emphasizing this division of subjectivity, this survivor’s films suggest the perpetual cognitive absence of the Holocaust, placing the event outside of representation, even for those who lived through it. These films thus intimate a barrier in, rather than of experience."

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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.