I am an associate professor (dr. habil.) in the Department of Anthropology of Literature and Cultural Studies, Faculty of Polish Studies, at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków. I am a co-founder and Director of the Research Center for Memory Cultures, co-founder and collaborator in the Curatorial Collective. Focusing on bystanders’ policies of memory I cooperate with museum panels, artists and curators addressing difficult pasts.
I specialize in cultural theory, visual culture studies, and memory studies. My current work focuses on abandoned, clandestine “non-sites of memory” in Eastern Europe, and visual approaches to genocide representation. I lead a team of post-doctoral scholars working on a research project Uncommemorated Genocide Sites and their Impact on Collective Memory, Cultural Identity, Ethical Attitudes, and Intercultural Relations in Contemporary Poland (NCN-founded, 2016–20).
In 2016-2019 I led the team (Erica Lehrer, Magdalena Zych, Wojciech Wilczyk) in the Awkward Objects of Genocide project under the auspices of the grant Transmitting Contentious Cultural Heritages with the Arts: From Intervention to Co-Production (TRACES, 2016–2019). From 2020 I am a co-PI (with Magdalena Waligórska) in DFG-NCN project (Beethoven Classic program) in a follow-up project: Polish Folk Art and the Holocaust: Perpetrator – Victim – Bystander Memory Transactions in the Polish German Context.
From 2020 I will be cooperating the CARMAH team in the project Challenging Populist Truth-Making in Europe. The Role of Museums in a Digital, Post-Truth‘ European Society.
I was awarded by Kościuszko Foundation, Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Foundation, ERSTE Stiftung and European Holocaust Research Infrastructure. In 2011 I was a visiting scholar at the University of Chicago.
more information: https://sites.google.com/site/romasendyka/
website of the Awkward Objects of Genocide project: http://www.terriblyclose.eu/
* (with Erica Lehrer) “Arts of Witness? Vernacular Art as a Source Base for ‘Bystander’ Holocaust Memory in Poland.” Holocaust Studies: A Journal of Culture and History, 2019 https://doi.org/10.1080/17504902.2019.1567667
* “Sites That Haunt: Affects and Non-Sites of Memory,” transl. by J. Croft. East European Politics and Societies (awarded) 2016, issue 4, 1-16. https://doi.org/10.1177/0888325416658950
* “Bystanders as Visual Subjects: Onlookers, Spectators, Observers, Gawkers in Occupied Poland,” in: Christina Morina, Krijn Thijs (eds.), Probing the Limits of Categorization: The Bystander in Holocaust History, New York: Berghahn Books, 2018, 52-71.