Office of Public Affairs

April 3, 2019 - USM Convocation hosts Dr. Yael Danieli speaking on "Memory, Trauma and the Generations of Genocide"


Press Contacts:

Danielle Vayenas, USM Director of Communications,, 207-780-4150 / 207-239-5715 (cell)

Daniel Hartill, USM Communications and Media Relations Specialist, 207-780-4744

USM Convocation contact:

Abraham J. Peck, Research Professor of History, (207) 780-4283

**Images available here.

"Memory, Trauma and the Generations of Genocide" - featuring Dr. Yael Danieli
an internationally renowned therapist who’s worked with survivors of genocide

WHEN: Wednesday, April 3
7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

Abromson Community Education Center, Hannaford Hall


University of Southern Maine Convocation hosts a special event, "Memory, Trauma and the Generations of Genocide," in honor of the April Genocide Commemorations for the Armenian, Jewish, Cambodian, and Rwandan communities.

The event will feature keynote speaker Dr. Yael Danieli, an internationally renowned therapist whose work with Holocaust survivors broke through the "conspiracy of silence" that defined the lack of consideration given to the trauma resulting from mass murder as well as physical and cultural genocides. Danieli is the point person for the United Nations on these issues and has worked with Holocaust survivors, genocide survivors in Rwanda, Truth and Reconciliation tribunals in South Africa, and Bosnian victims of genocide.

panel discussion will follow Dr. Yael Danieli's speech including members of those communities who have survived genocide in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries: the Native American and African American genocides; German Southwest Africa/Namibian genocide (1904-1907); Armenian genocide (1915-1923); Holocaust (1941-1945); Cambodian genocide (1975-1979); Rwandan genocide (1994); Darfur genocide (early 21st century) and the Kurdish cultural genocide that continues to this day.


This event is a program about the psychological trauma – soul wounds - that affect both survivors of physical and cultural genocides and those generations that follow them. “It is also about the efforts of our keynote speaker, Dr. Yael Danieli, to break the "conspiracy of silence" surrounding the treatment of intergenerational trauma among survivors of genocide and to demand justice and reparations as the minimal repayments for a pain and suffering that no community should ever endure,” said Abraham J. Peck, USM research professor of History.

Dr. Yael Danieli is a clinical psychologist in private practice, a victimologist, traumatologist, and the Director of the Group Project for Holocaust Survivors and their Children, which she co-founded in 1975 in the New York City area – the first such program in the world. She has done extensive psychotherapeutic work with survivors and children of survivors on individual, family, group and community bases. She has studied in depth post-war responses and attitudes toward them, and the impact these and the Holocaust had on their lives. Most recently, she has created the Danieli Inventory for Multigenerational Legacies of Trauma that allows scientifically valid assessment and comparative international study of the phenomena and founded the International Center for the Study, Prevention and Treatment of Multigenerational Legacies of Trauma. (Full bio here.)

This event is sponsored by: The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein, Marcus/Clegg LLC, USM Office of the President, Portland Harbor Hotel, Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine, Jewish Community Alliance, Armenian Cultural Association of Maine, Rwanda Community Association of Maine, USM Model United Nations and NAACP Maine.


Situated in Maine’s economic and cultural center, the University of Southern Maine (USM) is a public university with 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students taking courses online and at campuses in Portland, Gorham and Lewiston-Auburn. Known for its academic excellence, student focus and engagement with the community, USM provides students with hands-on experience that complements classroom learning and leads to employment opportunities in one of the nation’s most desirable places to live.