Internship Week #9: Resources and a Historiography

It has been a while since I last posted on my internship. After a few weeks away from the project, I am back at work and am actively working on multiple components of the Florida in World War I project. As with all my previous weeks, the website has been the priority, but I have taken a step back from the design in favor of working more closely on the content. I am centering my attention on the Resources section of the website, expanding upon a bibliography an undergraduate student put together last fall. The bibliography the student put together has a number of works that have small pockets of information on Florida in the First World War, but the works need to be combed through and organized. In addition to the few sources on Florida in World War I, my fellow project coordinators and I want the Resources section to go beyond just the focus of Florida. We have slowly been gathering various resources, which I have been putting together. I have also been adding books from my own research. The trick is trying to organize them in a way that helps those that visit the website to go through and find exactly what they are looking for. Or, if they are just browsing, it makes it easy to go through the resources without jumping from one topic/theme to the next.

In addition to working on content for the website I have also had my focus on the historiography paper that my internship requires. As I study World War I outside of my internship, I want to do something that will not only satisfy the requirement, but will help with my research in the future. After speaking with my internship supervisor, Dr. Barbara Gannon, we agreed that centering my historiography on memory and the First World War will prove beneficial. I have read a number of books on memory of the First World War and I am looking forward to creating a historiography around that. I think having the books together in one historiography paper will really be an advantage in the future, understanding the historical arguments and trends that I hope to fit my own work in. One of the books I am including in the historiography I am currently rereading. The book is called Bodies of War: World War I and the Politics of Commemoration in America, 1919-1933 by Lisa M. Budreau. Budreau argues there are three stages of the American response: repatriation, remembrance and return. Outside of the Florida and World War I project, my own research has primarily been centered in Europe, but this book opened me up to American aspects of memory and remembrance. It is interesting to see the parallels between the American perspective and the European perspective, including the politics of the physical act of burial.

As for this coming week, even though it is spring break, that does not mean the work stops! I am going to continue working on the project throughout the week with hopes of catching up from my time away.

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