Brigitte Sion

Dr. Brigitte Sion is a teacher, lecturer, writer, and scholar with an expertise ranging from memory and genocide studies, tourism productions, culture and media, and performance studies, to contemporary Jewish studies.

She teaches and lectures in a variety of contexts; she writes for various media outlets.

About Me

A teacher, writer, editor and translator, Brigitte Sion earned her Ph.D. in Performance Studies from New York University. Her dissertation examined the performance of memory at the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin and the Monument to the Disappeared in Buenos Aires. She also holds Master’s degrees in French (Penn), Journalism (Columbia) and Judaic Studies (Hebrew Union College).

She lectures and writes on a variety of topics: public memory and commemorative practices, Holocaust and genocide studies (especially in the areas of looted art, restitution, commemoration and artistic responses), media and communication, Sephardic Studies, among others.

A professional journalist, she is the author, co-author or editor of six published books, including two scholarly books about post-genocide memory, and a dozen academic articles. She has written over 5,500 newspaper articles about arts and culture, international politics, Jewish affairs, and current events. She was the director of projects for photographer Frédéric Brenner and the executive director of CICAD, an organization combating anti-Semitism in Geneva, Switzerland, her hometown.

  • Brigitte Sion
  • Brigitte Sion
  • Brigitte Sion

Academic books and articles

"Memorials in Berlin and Buenos Aires: Balancing Memory, Architecture, and Tourism", ed. Lexington Books, 2014

Editor, "Death Tourism: Disaster Sites as Recreational Landscapes", ed. Seagull Books, 2014

"Postcards from the Dreyfus Affair: Media and International Antisemitism" in "Revising Dreyfus: Art and Law", ed. Katz, 2013

"Mémoire et Performance Studies: A quoi servent les Mémoriaux?" in "Les Chantiers de la Mémoire", ed. Denis Peschanski & Denis Maréchal, Paris, INA Editions, 2013

"Le Mémorial de la Shoah à Berlin: Echec et Succès" in "Mémoire et mémorialisation : De l’absence à la représentation", ed. Denis Peschanski, Paris, Hermann, 2013

"Anne Frank, Icon of Redemption" in "Anne Frank Unbound: Media, Imagination, Memory", ed. Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett and Jeffrey Shandler, Indiana University Press, 2012

"Conflicting Sites of Memory in post-Genocide Cambodia" "Humanity", vol. 1, No. 2, Spring 2011, ed. Samuel Moyn, 2011

"From Purimspiel to Polish Masquerade: Performing Jews in Tykocin" in "Jews and Theater in an Intercultural Context", ed. Edna Nahshon, Brill, 2011

"Missing Bodies, Conflicted Rituals: Performing Memory in Germany, Argentina, and Cambodia" in "After Violence: The Dynamics of Religion, Trauma, and Reconciliation", ed. Andrea Bieler and Hans-Martin Gutmann, Frankfurt, Otto Lembeck, 2011

Various entries in "The Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World", ed. Norman Stillman, Brill, 5 vol., 2010

"From Hagiography to Iconoclasm: The Nazi Magazine Signal and its Mediations" in "Monsters in the Mirror: Representations of Nazism in Post-War Popular Culture", ed. Maartje Abbenhuis and Sara Buttsworth, Praeger, 2010

"Affective Memory, Ineffective Functionality: Experiencing Berlin’s Holocaust Memorial" in "Memorialization in Germany since 1945", ed. by William Niven & Chloe Paver" Palgrave/Macmillan, 2009

"Anti-Semitic Letters to the Editor in Swiss Media and the Crisis over Holocaust-Era Dormant Accounts (1995-2002)" in "Jewish Images in the Media", ed. Josef Seethaler, Vienna, Austrian Academy of Sciences Press, 2007

"Mater l’oubli: le jeu d’échecs dans la Vie mode d’emploi de Georges Perec" in "Echiquiers d’encre: Le Jeu d’échecs et les lettres", ed. Jacques Berchtold, Droz, 1998

"Deux écrivains face à la maladie: Thomas Bernhard et Hervé Guibert", in "Equinoxe, Revue romande de sciences humaines, Le sida et les lettres", ed. François Wasserfallen & Michel Dante, 1991

Books and essays of general interest

Brigitte Sion’s articles have appeared in the Journal de Genève, Le Monde des Religions, Tenou’a, Hayom, myjewishlearning.com, Lilith, among others.

"The Geneva International Auto Show 1905-2005", Slatkine, 2004 (with Joelle De Syon)
(A visual history of the largest automobile show in the world for its centennial)

"Circulez, Genevois! Y'a tout à voir!", Slatkine, 2002 (with Joelle De Syon)
(An iconography book about the impact of early automobiles on social, urban, and economic life)

"Max Ehrlich: Le Théâtre contre la Barbarie", Metropolis, 2004
(A biography of a famous German-Jewish theater actor who performed in Nazi camps)

"L’Aventure du Judaïsme Libéral à Genève", Geneva, FJL, 2007
(A history of Reform Judaism in Geneva)

"Report on Switzerland for the American Jewish Yearbook (2000-2008)"

"ABC du Judaïsme", Geneva, CICAD, 2002
(An introduction to Judaism)

"Anti-Semitism: Knowing it Better, Fighting it Better", Geneva, CICAD, 1998

  • Brigitte Sion

  • Brigitte Sion

  • Brigitte Sion

  • Brigitte Sion

  • Brigitte Sion

Lectures and courses

Courses taught:

Global Memory Politics
Religion and Memory
Tourism Productions
Travel, Pilgrimage and Tourism
Religion and Media
Religion and Food
Jews and Food
Religion and the Body
Death and Beyond
The Saga of Spanish Jews
The Jews from the Ottoman Empire
Jews from Egypt in the 20th century
What is Jewish Art?
The History of Anti-Semitism

among others.

  • Brigitte Sion

Contact Info

    Brigitte Sion is available for speaking engagements in English on numerous subjects related to her expertise.

    Please contact her for more information.

    See her LinkedIn and follow her on Twitter.

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