About Me

about-me-page

About Me

I am Christine Beresniova, a cultural anthropologist specializing in research on the implementation of policies for the promotion of tolerance, Holocaust education, and human rights in Eastern Europe. I earned my PhD in Educational Policy Studies and Anthropology from the Wright School of Education at Indiana University and I currently design and implement international and domestic education programs at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC.

Many years ago, I started this website to connect with other like-minded individuals interested in the political, cultural, and historical experiences of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania. Anthropology, to borrow the words of Henry F. Wollcott, is not just a research tool, but a way of seeing. Having spent over a decade researching post-Soviet States, I am both personally and professionally committed to scholarship that contributes to understanding the diverse perspectives of many so that educational policy implementation can more effectively promote tolerance, democracy, human rights, and pluralism. The lessons learned in Eastern Europe are applicable in many other parts of the world as well, especially countries with challenges in educational development, values promotion, and the involvement (welcome or not) of international agencies.

Education

  • Ph.D. Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
  • M.A. International Education, George Washington University, Washington DC
  • B.A. Liberal Arts, Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville NY

Professional Experience

  • 2018 - present Executive Director, South Carolina Council on the Holocaust
  • 2013 - present Instructor, Department of Anthropology, Ashford University
  • 2015 - 2018 Research Fellow; Education Coordinator, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Publications -Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

  • 2019 “Children who speak in their parents’ clichés”: Exploring the board social relationships between cultural practices and teacher identity in Lithuanian Holocaust education, European Education, pp. 111-126. Doi 10.1080/10564934.2018.1500487

Publications -Peer Reviewed Book Volumes

  • 2015 “Unless they have to”: The influence of school hierarchy on teachers in Lithuanian Holocaust education. In Stevick, D. (Ed.) As the Witnesses Fall Silent: 21st Century Holocaust Education in Curriculum, Policy and Practice. Switzerland: Springer International Publishing.
  • 2014 An unimagined community: Examining narratives of the Holocaust in Lithuanian textbooks. In J.H. Williams (Ed.) (Re)Constructing memory: School textbooks, identities, and the pedagogies and politics of imagining community. Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.
  • 2011 When intolerance means more than prejudice: Lithuanian education reforms for the promotion of tolerance.” In I. Silova (Ed.) Post-socialism is not dead: (Re)reading the global in comparative education. Bingly, United Kingdom: Emerald Publishers.

Book Reviews

  • 2017 Review of Gediminas Lankauskas. The land of weddings and Rain: Nation and modernity in post-socialist Lithuania. Toronto, CA: The University of Toronto Press, 2015. Anthropology of Eastern Europe Review.
  • 2013 Review of Anna Fournier. Forging democracy in a new Ukraine: Students between freedom and justice by Anna Fournier. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012. Anthropology of Eastern Europe Review.

Manuscripts in Preparation

  • Beresniova, C. & Gross, M.H., The state of Holocaust education in the United States, Review of Educational Research, Sage Publications (in preparation)
  • Beresniova, C. & Granite, L., What if Holocaust education isn't the answer we think it is? Rethinking the moral approach, Teaching History (in preparation)
  • Holocaust Education in the United States: A 75 year retrospective, The Holocaust Supplement, vol. 7, The State Newspaper (in preparation)

Other Publications

Honors And Awards

  • 2019 Friend of the Social Studies Award, South Carolina Council on Social Studies
  • 2018 Honorable Mention, Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies 2018 Book Prize
  • 2015 Finalist, The Council for Anthropology and Education Outstanding Dissertation Award
  • 2015 Maris M. and Mary Higgins Proffitt Outstanding Dissertation Fellowship Best Dissertation of the Year Award, Indiana University, School of Education
  • 2014 Takiff Foundation Fellow, Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • 2013 East European Studies Summer Research Fellow, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
  • 2013 Museum Teacher Educators Fellow, National Institute for Holocaust Education, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • 2012 Junior Scholars’ Training Seminar in Eastern European Studies, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
  • 2013 Gold Medal, Best Article Written by a Contributing Author, Nevada Press Association
  • 2012 American Center Small Grants Award, United States Embassy Vilnius
  • 2011 Fulbright Fellow, Institute of International Education
  • 2011 Women in Science Travel Grant, Women in Science Program, Indiana University
  • 2010 Foreign Language Area Studies Grant (FLAS), US Department of Education
  • 2010 Pre-Dissertation Feasibility Grant, Office of the Vice President of International Affairs, Indiana University
  • 2010 Graduate Conference Grant, Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies
  • 2009 Language and Culture Stipend, Education Exchanges Support Foundation at the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Lithuania
  • 2009 International Enhancement Grant, Office of the Vice President of International Affairs, Indiana University
  • 2008 School of Education Fellow, Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Indiana University

invited Talks

  • 2019 Beyond Religious Boundaries, US Army Fort Jackson (the largest initial entry training base in the US), Columbia, South Carolina, April 5, 2019 https://www.army.mil/article/220287/fort_jackson_observes_days_of_remembrance
  • 2018 Holocaust History in Lithuania, The Vilnius Yiddish Institute, Vilnius University, and the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies of United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Vilnius, Lithuania, September 3-7, 2018.
  • 2018 Teacher Motivations in Lithuanian Holocaust Education, YIVO and the Lithuanian National Library, Vilnius, Lithuania, March 21-22, 2018.
  • 2017 Teaching the Holocaust in Rwanda, The Kigali Genocide Memorial Center, Kigali, Rwanda, October 7-10, 2017.
  • 2015 Jewish Life in Belarus and the Baltic States (5-part seminar), Rodef Shalom Lecture Series, July 21– August 18.
  • 2015 The Impact of Holocaust Education, Sommerhauser Workshop on Holocaust Education, Harris Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. April 16-17.
  • 2015 Unmaking Citizens: Power, Appropriation, and Institutional Reform in Post-Soviet Lithuania, the Global Initiative on Civil Society and Conflict, The University of South Florida, Global Initiative on Civil Society and Conflict, February 5-6.
  • 2014 The Holocaust in Lithuania, The Resource Action Center of Reform Judaism, Washington, DC, December 9.
  • 2012 Navigating the Nation: Narratives in Post-Soviet Lithuanian Educational Experiences, The Lithuanian Institute of History, Vilnius, Lithuania, December 7.
  • 2012 Experiences Using Anthropological Fieldwork in Lithuania, Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas, Lithuania, November 8.
  • 2012 The NaziOccupation in Lithuania. Mykolas Romeris University, Kaunas, Lithuania, October 13.
  • 2012 Sometimes it Pays to Remember; Sometimes it Pays to Forget: Teacher Experiences in Contemporary Lithuanian Training Programs for Tolerance Education, University of Latvia, Riga, Latvia, October 8.
  • 2012 Diplomatic Briefing. United States Embassy, Vilnius, Lithuania, September 11.
  • 2012 Using Harry Potter to Understand Tolerance and Prejudice in the Lithuanian Context, Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas, Lithuania, March 18-23.
  • 2012 Understanding the Educational Context in Lithuania, The Tolerant Youth Association, Kaunas, Lithuania, January 27.
  • 2012 Understanding the Educational Context in Lithuania, The Tolerant Youth Association, Kaunas, Lithuania, January 27.
  • 2011 Education and the Making of the Post/Soviet Citizen, Vilnius University, Vilnius, Lithuania, December 1.
  • 2011 Democratic Citizenship and Values Education. International Educational Practitioner Conference. The Parliament of the Lithuanian Republic and The Ministry of Education and Science, Vilnius, Lithuania, November 22.
  • 2011 Education and the Post-Soviet Citizen: Lithuanian Teacher Initiatives for the Promotion of Tolerance, Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas, Lithuania, November 10.
  • 2010 Does Tolerance Education Promote Intolerance in Lithuania? The Jewish Community of Lithuania Lecture Series, Vilnius, Lithuania, July 10.

CONFERENCE PARTICIPATION

Panels Organized

  • 2017 Fulbright Students as Cultural Boundary Brokers: Three Case Studies for Educational Change, Connecting Hearts and Minds for Global Change, Fulbright Association, Washington, DC October 24-26 (upcoming).
  • 2014 Producing Education Policy Ethnography: Challenges, Insights, and Potential, American Anthropological Association, Washington, DC, December 3-7.

Papers Presented

  • 2019 Teacher Motivations in Teaching the Holocaust, Association of Holocaust Organizations Conference, Charleston, SC, January 13-16. (accepted)
  • 2017 Decolonizing the “Modern:” Anthropology and the Unpacking of Implicit Bias in the Promotion of Post-Soviet Holocaust Education, American Anthropological Association Conference, Washington, DC, November 29-December 3.
  • 2015 “Not unless they have to”: Power, Politics, and Hierarchy in Lithuanian Holocaust Education, Comparative and International Education Society, Washington, DC, March 8-12.
  • 2014 Suffering as a Zero Sum Game: Holocaust History, National Identity, and the Politics of Memory in Post-Soviet Lithuania, Council for European Studies at Columbia University (CES), March 14-16.
  • 2014 Historical Justice, Contemporary Discord: Examining the Rise of Resistance to Holocaust Remembrancein Lithuania, Havighurst Center and Soyuz Joint Conference for Young Researchers, Miami, OH, February 28-March 1.
  • 2013 The Anthropology of Policy in Formal Education: Imagining, Enforcing, and Contesting New Publics, American Anthropological Association, Chicago, IL, November 20-24.
  • 2013 Reclaiming the Nation: Teacher Empowerment, Policy Implementation, and the Politics of Memory in Lithuanian Programs for Tolerance, Comparative and International Education Society, New Orleans, LA. March 10-15. (Accepted)
  • 2011 Moving Forward, Looking Back: Naming the Holocaust in Lithuanian Textbooks,Baltic Studies Conference, Stockholm, Sweden, June 12-15.
  • 2011 Heroes, Enemies, and Victims Re-imagined: Competing Representations of World War II in the Baltic States, Comparative and International Education Society, Montreal, Canada, May 1-5.
  • 2010 Education and the Making of the Post-Soviet Lithuanian: School Reforms for Tolerance in the EU Context, Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies, Seattle, WA, April 22-24.
  • 2010 Education Policy in Lithuania: A Step toward Tolerance or just EU Accession? Comparative and International Education Society, Chicago, IL. March 1-5.
  • 2008 Examining Tolerance: A Comparative Case Study of Education and Society in Latvia and Lithuania, Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies, Bloomington, IN, May 29-June 1.
  • 2008 Tolerance Education: Comparative Case Studies in Japan, Latvia, and Lithuania, Comparative and International Education Society, New York, NY, March 17-21.
  • 2008 Assessing Tolerance Education Programs, Educational Symposium for Research Innovations, Washington, DC, March 1-2.
  • 2007 Holocaust Education in the Baltic States, Comparative and International Education Society, Baltimore, MD, February 25-March 1.

Departmental Talks

  • 2016 International Holocaust Education and Culture, Levine Institute for Holocaust Education, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
  • 2014 Mapping Transnational Holocaust Discourses and Historicizing Local Knowledge in Post-Soviet Lithuanian Educational Reforms, Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
  • 2014 “Patriots” and “Traitors”: How Holocaust Education in Lithuania Became a Battleground for National Identity Formation. Department of Anthropology, Ashford University.

TEACHING EXPERIENCE

Ashford University, Teacher of Record

  • Introduction to Cultural Anthropology (quarterly courses since Spring 2013)
  • Language, Communication, and Culture (Spring 2014, Summer 2014, Fall 2014; Winter 2015)
  • General Education Capstone (Fall 2014, Winter 2014, Spring 2015)

Indiana University, Teacher of Record

  • Education and American Culture (Fall 2009, Spring 2009, Fall 2010, Spring 2011)

Research Experience

  • 2009 UNESCO, Cultural Diversity in Indiana Schools, Center for Civic Education, Indiana University, Advisor Terry Clark

Professional Service

  • Book Reviewer, Anthropology of Eastern European Review,2013
  • Peer Reviewer, Holocaust education issue, European Education, 2012
  • Editor, Gender issue, Anthropology of Eastern European Review, 2011

University Service

  • Academic Search Committee for Professor of Education and Economics, Student Representative, Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Indiana University, 2011
  • International Programs Committee, Student Representative, School of Education, Indiana University, 2009
  • Baltic and Finnish Studies Association (BaFSA), President, Indiana University, 2008

MEDIA COVERAGE

Interviews

  • Leonienė, E. (2012). American in Lithuania finds a second homeland. Seimininkė, 1(20), 34-38
  • Bončkutė, M. (2010-04-09). “Lithuanians don’t embrace tolerance because they see themselves as victims.” Lieutvos Rytas [Lithuanian daily newspaper]

Relevent Professional Experience

  • Program Instructor, Close Up Foundation, Washington DC, 2008
  • Program Manager, Institute for Biomedical Sciences, George Washington University, Washington DC, 2007
  • Student Information Manager, International Services Office, George Washington University, Washington DC, 2005-2007
  • International Student Advisor, Kaplan International Programs, Kaplan, Washington DC, 2003-2004
  • International Student Advisor, International Student Services, University of Texas at Dallas, Dallas, TX, 2002-2003
  • Staff Affairs Intern, United Nations Geneva, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Geneva, Switzerland, 2000

Courses Prepared To Teach

  • Social Foundations of Education
  • The Politics of Citizenship
  • Tolerance and Multiculturalism
  • The Anthropology of Policy
  • The Politics of Memory
  • Ethnographic Methods
  • Social Theory

Languages

  • Lithuanian: Fluent
  • French: Reading
  • German: Reading
  • Hebrew: Beginning

Professional Memberships

  • American Anthropological Association
  • Council for Education and Anthropology
  • Comparative and International Education Society
  • Association of Women in Slavic Studies
  • Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies

Phone Number

  • 1-803-351-0659

Web Address