Narratives Beyond Words: Notes on the Embodiment of Trauma and Cultural/Religious Jewishness among Third-Generation Jews in Germany
“Dear Editor, Once again, Jews are only about money…”: Anti-Semitic Letters to the Editors in the Swiss Media and the Crisis over Holocaust-Era Dormant Accounts (1995-2002)
Abstract: Reviewing the musical Imagine This for The Guardian, Michael Billington wrote: ‘they said it couldn’t be done: a musical about the Warsaw ghetto. And now that I’ve seen it, I know that they were right’. A few weeks later in the same newspaper, Anne Karpf suggested that one could be forgiven for thinking that every day was Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) in the United Kingdom. The plethora of Holocaust-related films and other ‘cultural’ events (I use the term loosely, to include the musical of the Warsaw Ghetto and other such ill-considered phenomena) indicated to Karpf that there is an excess of attention being paid to the Holocaust and that, especially at a time when Israel was pounding the life out of the Gaza Strip, such attention is unjustified. Karpf, unintentionally recapitulating a standard trope of British responses, writes that we have ‘now become saturated with images and accounts of the Holocaust’
Abstract: At the time of writing, two major landmarks have occurred in what might be called the history of the ‘afterlife of Holocaust memory’ in Britain.1 Most recently, the beginning of a new academic year in schools and colleges in England and Wales brought the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the National Curriculum — an event of immense significance in relation to Holocaust education in the United Kingdom. Whereas previously the presence of the Holocaust in educational curricula varied considerably, the incorporation of the genocide into the statutory content for the first National Curriculum for History in 1991 ensured that school history would become a core conduit in the expansion of knowledge and awareness among a new generation of young people. Beyond the chalkface, the other noteworthy anniversary of 2011 took place on 27 January when Britain held its tenth annual Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD). A day which ‘provides an opportunity for everyone to learn the lessons from the Holocaust, Nazi persecution and subsequent genocides and apply them to the present day to create a safer, better future’, HMD speaks to and of a process of heightened insti-tutionalisation which began in earnest at the turn of the millennium and has continued unabated since.2 HMD thus provides an illuminating window onto the preconceptions, priorities and politics which currently envelop and influence the shape of memorialisation in Britain, but it also does much more than this: as one of the first such days to be created in Western Europe following the Stockholm Declaration of 2000, Britain’s HMD also gestures to a gamut of issues related to memorialisation in general and Holocaust memory in the contemporary world in particular. Amongst others, these include the practices and procedures of collective remembrance, the forces behind a ‘turning’ to memory in the postmodern epoch, and the rationale for (and consequences of) the emergence of the Holocaust as a global phenomena in the past quarter of a century.
‘We Should Do Something for the Fiftieth’: Remembering Auschwitz, Belsen and the Holocaust in Britain in 1995
Abstract: Six years before Britain’s first annual Holocaust Memorial Day was observed in 2001, the 50th anniversaries of the liberation of Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen were remembered as part of a wider public calendar of war-re la ted commemorative activities.1 Holocaust Memorial Day has (rightly) been the subject of much scholarly attention, some of it critical of the day’s ‘pathos’ approach to commemoration.2 In contrast, there has been markedly less discussion of how the anniversaries in 1995 of the liberation of the camps were remembered in Britain. This chapter attempts to supplement previous studies that have focused on aspects of Holocaust commemoration in Britain in 1995, notably those by Judith Petersen and Joanne Reilly et al. 2 The aim is to question whether the ways in which Holocaust commemoration was performed and articulated in 1995 helps us to think about how subsequent commemorations have been organised and understood. The approach that this discussion takes is both empirical (setting out salient features of the public discourse of Holocaust memory in 1995 under various genre headings) and critical (commenting on some of the implications of these discursive features for thinking about Holocaust memory in Britain). Part of the justification for this study is that the imbalances between scholarly interest in the commemorations of 1995 and 2001 could be usefully readjusted, if only because of the ways in which they relate to certain methodological possibilities for analysing ‘Holocaust memory’ in a British context. After all, as Jeffrey Olick has argued, commemorations should not be conceptualised as isolated, discrete occurrences.
Topics: Holocaust Commemoration, Holocaust, Main Topic: Holocaust and Memorial, Museums, Post-Colonial
Abstract: Relatively little comment has been passed on the role of the Holocaust at the Imperial War Museum (IWM). There is a critical discourse about the role of the exhibition in the museum of course, and Rebecca Jinks’s and Antoine Capet’s essays contribute admirably to that discourse, yet the specific question of the relationship between thinking about the Holocaust and thinking about Empire and imperial genocide has seldom been asked. Yet as Jinks’s essay makes clear, Britain has an imperial past and as such it is not possible for the Holocaust exhibition to just avoid that context. It would be very difficult anywhere in Britain, but in the IWM, the official repository of the nation’s war memories, it is impossible. What is more, the IWM specifically tasks itself, in its Crimes Against Humanity exhibition, to engage with genocide in a wider context and as such to place the Holocaust in that context. And the British Empire was a site of genocide. One might expect then to find that the IWM grapples with the problem of genocide in the British Empire (in Australia, in Ireland, in India for example). It does not. As such, I want to use this commentary to think more about the relationship between the galloping British memory of the Holocaust that Capet identifies, and Britain’s memory of genocide in its Empire that Jinks highlights, using the IWM as a case study.
Holocaust Memory and Contemporary Atrocities: The Imperial War Museum’s Holocaust Exhibition and Crimes Against Humanity Exhibition
Abstract: n the last decade or so, research has begun to address the ways in which global discourses of memory, within which the Holocaust is paradigmatic, often ‘borrow’ Holocaust iconography and tropes of memorial-isation to discuss or commemorate other tragedies.1 This utilisation of Holocaust memory is indicative of the position that the Holocaust now generally holds throughout the Western world, and yet it also raises questions about how we represent, and respond to, the other tragedies of the twentieth century. In this vein, this chapter explores the interactions between the memory of the Holocaust and other contemporary mass atrocities in Britain, using as case studies the Imperial War Museum’s (IWM) Holocaust exhibition, which opened in 2000, and its Crimes Against Humanity exhibition, which first opened in 2002 and then moved to a different part of the building in 2009. While on the face of it, the sheer difference in size and visitor numbers between the two exhibitions could easily function as a metaphor for the disparity between the status of Holocaust memory, and the memory of ‘other genocides’ in Britain and the West, my object is to explore the symbiotic and perhaps even dependent relationship between the two exhibitions, and by extension the wider categories of ‘Holocaust’ and ‘genocide’.
Abstract: It can be supposed that most people interested in twentieth-century history are familiar with the Imperial War Museum (IWM) and that most will have visited its permanent Holocaust exhibition since this was formally opened in June 2000. What Suzanne Bardgett, the curator who runs the exhibition, calls its ‘artifacts’ cover 1,200 square metres but before 2009 it showed only one piece of ‘art’ indirectly derived from the discovery and liberation of Bergen-Belsen concentration camp by the British Army in April 1945: Edgar Ainsworth’s drawing Wem Berger, Aged 13, after a Year in Ravensbriick (near Bélsen), April 1945 It is not always realised that the IWM has, in fact, many more drawings and paintings connected with what is now known as Holocaust Art. The museum now publishes a history of the ‘hangings’ from which each of these works has benefited and this indicates that, while there were many hangings immediately after the war, there was then a long period of ‘purgatory’ from which these works are only now re-emerging. In a revealing article of 2004, Bardgett suggested that it was the whole issue of representing the Holocaust in the Museum which was taboo until the 1980s.2 Inevitably, the paintings and drawings suffered from this reticence, which largely explains their neglect as an iconographie source for Holocaust studies in Britain.
Translated Title: Jews and Judaism in Finland
Can a victim be responsible? Anti-Semitic consequences of victimhood-based identity and competitive victimhood in Poland
Abstract: “The Holocaust was not unique to the Jewish population in Europe. Many oth-ers, including Poles, died in the same way,” said Romanian President Jon Iliescuin 2003 (Davidovitz, 2003), later mentioning that his nation cannot be accused of genocide in Transnistria. Similar statements were often made by other politicalleaders who denied the uniqueness of the Holocaust in order to present their ownnations as unique victims of historical atrocities and to deny the historical cru-elties perpetrated by ingroup members. Thus, perception of ingroup victimhoodserves as a strategy that allows for denial of responsibility
“Unless They Have To”: Power, Politics and Institutional Hierarchy in Lithuanian Holocaust Education
Measuring Holocaust Knowledge and Its Relationship to Attitudes towards Diversity in Spain, Canada, Germany, and the United States
“They Think It Is Funny to Call Us Nazis”: Holocaust Education and Multicultural Education in a Diverse Germany
Mind the Gap: Holocaust Education in Germany, between Pedagogical Intentions and Classroom Interactions
Abstract: At a meeting of the Helsinki signatories (CSCE — Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe) in Copenhagen in June 1990 a formal document was adopted which ‘clearly and unequivocally condemned anti-Semitism’ along with ‘racial and ethnic hatred’. The signatories agreed to ‘intensify their efforts to combat these phenomena’. The action was unprecedented. No international or regional treaty or agreement or declaration had ever specifically condemned anti-Semitism …. Motivation for the changed attitude resulted from the shock of European leaders with the results of the 1989 revolutions in East Central Europe which brought in their wake waves of hatred directed against Jews as well as Gypsies and migrants.
The politics of the Holocaust in Estonia: Historical memory and social divisions in Estonian education
Britain and the Formation of Contemporary Holocaust Consciousness: A Product of Europeanization, or Exercise in Triangulation?
How to Teach about the Holocaust? Psychological Obstacles in Historical Education in Poland and Germany
Topics: Conflict Resolution, Dialogue, Inter-Communal Relations, Main Topic: Holocaust and Memorial, Holocaust Education
Abstract: Holocaust education in many countries faces severe obstacles, and the effects of such education are far from desirable. Research on German students found that education about the National Socialist period in Germany did not improve intergroup attitudes. Similarly, a study performed on Polish students in Warsaw showed that the extent of Holocaust education did not affect intergroup attitudes and led to more biased vision of the Holocaust. In both countries current Holocaust education seems to convey simplified entitative information about groups—such that all members of perpetrator group are presented as evil, and all bystanders as righteous. Based on psychological research on moral emotions and psychological needs in reconciliation, we propose another approach to the Holocaust education. We suggest that education about the Holocaust should take into account psychological knowledge about the diversity of human behavior during genocide , including greater understanding of dehumanization , stereotyping , moral exclusion and bystander non-intervention.
Antysemityzm na gruzach sztetl. Stosunek polskiej młodzieży do Żydów w miastach i miasteczkach południowej i wschodniej Polski
Translated Title: Anti-Semitism on shtetl debris. The attitude of Polish youth to Jews in cities and towns of southern and eastern Poland
Zagrażający spiskowcy. Zjawisko antysemityzmu w Polsce na podstawie Polskiego Sondażu Uprzedzeń 2009
Translated Title: Threatening conspirators. Anti-Semitism in Poland based on the Polish Prejudice Survey 2009
Contemporary patterns of family formation, fertility and family dissolution among Jews and non-Jews in the Netherlands
Jewish Studies in the FSU: From Scholarship to Social, Cultural and Educational Construction, Regeneration and Growth
Collective Memory and Cultural Politics: Narrating and Commemorating the Rescue of Jewish Children by Belgian Convents during the Holocaust
Vanishing Diaspora? Jews in the Netherlands and Their Ties with Judaism: Facts and Expectations about Their Future
Immigration to Israel among the Professional Class: A Case Study of Legal and Medical Professionals among the Jews of France
Topics: Jewish Community, Dialogue, Conflict, Conflict Resolution, Divisions, Main Topic: Other, Memory
Abstract: In this deeply personal essay, Leora Tec, the daughter of Holocaust survivor and Holocaust scholar Nechama Tec from Lublin, Poland, examines the causes of past and present divides among many in the Polish Jewish community, both Jews and non-Jews. She shows how factors such as: silence (both personal and institutional or governmental); ignorance; an overemphasis on Polish rescue; a competition of victimhood; and an overemphasis on the separation between Jews and non-Jews before the war, have all deepened this chasm. And she demonstrates—using her own experience encountering the memory work done by those at Brama Grodzka-NN Theatre Centre as an example—how these divides can be bridged by collective, artistic, and individual remembrance. This remembrance holds space for what is absent or incomplete, while valuing the “fragments” of history. Most of all, she shows how forging human connection in the present, continues the work of remembering the past with reverence, and has enabled her to find a connection to Poland. Ultimately, she concludes that the human beings building the bridges are themselves the bridge.
Topics: Jewish Community, Jewish Identity, Dialogue, Jewish Culture, Main Topic: Identity and Community, Interviews
Abstract: This article has a twofold aim: historical and practical. First, it conducts a brief historical review of the Jewish community in Serbia, addressing the ways in which this community has contributed to country’s culture, history, sciences, politics, and social life. It focuses especially on Jewish life in Serbia after the Holocaust, and the various difficulties of assimilation and emigration. Second, the essay investigates the practical realities of interculturalism in Serbia, weighing these realities against concerns about preserving Jewish identity. The article stems from three interviews: Stefan Sablić, theater director, musician, and founder of Shira U’tfila; Sonja Viličić, activist and founder/director ofNGOHaver Serbia; Dragana Stojanović, anthropologist and scholar of cultural studies. Taken together, the responses of these speakers offer novel approaches to multiculturalism and intercultural dialogue in an area with a complex history and cultural makeup.
Translated Title: Just click the mouse. Anti-Semites in Slovakia - a subculture meeting on the Internet
Abstract: Paper analyses what role recent anti-Semitism plays in societal and political discourse. Although antisemitism is not widely perceived as a hot issue in Slovakia bearing in mind marginal position of openly antisemitic groups, it plays a role of exclusion and disqualification of liberal elites fostering liberal democratic regime and multicultural society. On the example of several Jewish and non-Jewish public entrepreneurs author analyses in what extent anti-Semitism plays and important role in a battle for the open society and how it is interconnected with anti-globalism, anti-Americanism, and anti-westernism. Author concludes that de-judaized perspective of anti-Semitism and even of Jews themselves in a Sartre s sense is remaining one of the greatest challenges for sociologists researching antisemitism in Slovakia.