Alexandra Szabó Awarded 2023-2024 Greenberg Research Fellowship

Headshot of Alexandra Szabó.

Alexandra Szabó, a PhD candidate in History at Brandeis University, has been awarded the 2023-2024 Margee and Douglas Greenberg Research Fellowship at the USC Dornsife Center for Advanced Genocide Research. She will be residence for a month during the Spring 2024 semester to conduct research for her dissertation, in which she investigates Hungarian Romani and Jewish women’s experiences of fertility abuses (failed pregnancies, miscarriages, sterilizations, postwar infertility) in the shadow of Nazi persecution.

During her time at the Center, Szabó will draw on the Holocaust survivor testimonies from the USC Shoah Foundation Visual History Archives (VHA), as well as materials in the Holocaust and Genocide Collection at USC Libraries. In her project, Szabó examines these women’s experiences not only during the war but in the years since, analyzing the short and long-term impacts of these abuses and exploring how survivors discuss these experiences – or not – after the war, including in the form of survivor testimony.

Szabó earned her BA in American Studies and Pedagogy at the PPKE University in Budapest. She holds two MA degrees – one in Literary and Cultural Studies from Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE) and the other in History from Central European University. In her first master’s thesis, she analyzed literary representations of a changing Jewish identity by comparing modes of portrayals before and after the war through Hungarian literature. For her second master’s thesis, she researched the return of deported survivors to Hungary from labor and concentration camps after liberation. Szabó co-founded and serves as a researcher for the interdisciplinary Digital Lens Research Group at ELTE University, which pursues digital research on Holocaust testimonies, focusing particularly on gendered experiences of the Holocaust, topographies of persecution, and language.

Szabó has published research articles, book reviews, and book chapters on topics related to this research, as well as on research about memories of Jewish Budapest before and after the Holocaust. Her work has appeared in Cultural History, The Hungarian Holocaust Review, European Journal of Women’s Studies, among other venues. She has earned numerous fellowships and awards for her research from institutions such as the International Society for Cultural Studies, the Hungarian American Coalition, European Holocaust Research Infrastructure (EHRI), and the Cedars-Sinai Center for Medicine, Holocaust and Genocide Studies. She has also served as an interviewer for the USC Shoah Foundation’s Last Chance Testimony initiative.

The first endowed fellowship established at the Center in 2014, the Margee and Douglas Greenberg Research Fellowship is awarded annually to an outstanding advanced-standing Ph.D. candidate from any discipline and anywhere in the world for dissertation research focused on testimony from the USC Shoah Foundation Visual History Archive and other unique USC research resources. The fellowship enables the recipient to spend one month in residence at the USC Dornsife Center for Advanced Genocide Research during the academic year and to deliver a public lecture about their research.