From 1 September visitors will no longer need to pre-book to visit the Library’s exhibition space. Please note that we are asking readers to pre-book a space in the Wolfson Reading Room until 8 September.
We will continue to ask all visitors to wear a face covering and to observe social distancing whilst in the building.
We are closely monitoring the situation with respect to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and, as such, our regulations are under constant review and might change at short notice. The safety and wellbeing of all our staff and visitors are of paramount importance and we thank you for your patience and understanding as we continue to navigate this uncertain time.
We look forward to welcoming you back to the Library soon!
The Library is hiring!
Work with Us
This autumn, The Wiener Holocaust Library will embark on an ambitious five-year digital transformation project to revolutionise access to the Library’s archive.
Our Digital Transformation Project will create a much improved digital infrastructure for the Library. The project involves the creation of a new searching mechanism, the scaling up of our digitisation programme, the enhancement of our catalogue records and the preservation of our most fragile collections.
To assist us with this project we are looking for:
The successful candidate will work with a wide variety of our unique materials including books from the 1930s, concentration camp guides and pamphlets, periodicals, artworks and objects. This material includes evidence of political antisemitism and fascism across Europe, Britain and elsewhere, rare newspapers and reports written by Displaced Persons and Holocaust survivors after liberation and one of the largest collections of Nazi propaganda held outside Germany.
Digital Asset Assistant
The successful applicant will be expected to have a degree in a relevant subject area, and show a genuine enthusiasm and commitment to a professional career in librarianship, digital humanities, or archive management. Excellent IT, communication and organizational skills are essential, as are creativity, enthusiasm and self-motivation. A good understanding of the subject matter of the Library and its mission are desirable.
We are seeking an experienced archivist to join our team on a full-time three-year (36 months) contract. The majority of the material in our collections are in the German language, including typescript and manuscript documents. The catalogue descriptions to these collections will be created in English. The successful applicant will therefore need the requisite language skills.
Due to popular demand this exhibition, which draws upon the Library's archival collections to tell the often untold story of Jewish resistance, will be returning for a limted run.
21 September – 30 September 2021
"We are not alone": Legacies of Eugenics
Legacies of Eugenics will contribute to the ongoing public conversation about the role of science in shaping our current attempts to come to terms with several eugenic legacies, from racism to decolonisation.
The Library's upcoming Autumn exhibition
This Fascist Life: Radical Right Movements in Interwar Europe
6 October 2021 - 4 February 2022
Fascist students in Vienna, 1931. ÖNB Bildarchiv. H 780 B
Fascist political parties, militia and movements emerged across Europe in the years after the First World War. United by ultra-nationalist ideas and similarities of style and action, these movements shaped, and in some places remade politics and society. They mobilised on the streets to attack their opponents and to support the accession to power of fascist parties in countries such as Italy, Germany and Austria. Later, they helped to enable German occupations and the Nazis’ policies of persecution and genocide across Europe.
Drawing upon the Library’s unique archival collections, first assembled in the 1930s by Dr Alfred Wiener as part of his fight against fascism, as well as the expertise of an international group of experts in interwar fascism, this exhibition focuses on the experiences of rank-and-file members of fascist movements in the interwar period. It explores the world of the young and socially diverse fascist activists and examines their motivations and activities.
Today, as extreme right-wing radicalism grows in strength in Europe and elsewhere, this timely exhibition looks back to the first manifestations of the destructive phenomenon of fascism.
Marius Turda is a professor at Oxford Brookes University and Director of its Centre for Medical Humanities. He is also the curator of two exhibitions, including“We Are Not Alone”: Legacies of Eugenicswhich is on display at the Library in September.
Eugenics is based on the erroneous claim that most human activity, whether physical or mental, is determined by heredity. To control heredity, eugenicists claim, is to ensure the betterment of future generations and the survival of the species. Another erroneous claim is that our society is under constant threat from those with physical and mental disabilities. Eugenicists want to prevent these people from having children. Finally, eugenics promises a solution to social problems as varied as crimes, alcoholism, and poverty. None of these claims are substantiated by credible scientific evidence, and none are socially or morally justified. In the 20th century, eugenic beliefs supported the murder of millions of people belonging to religious, ethnic, and sexual minorities, and those living with disabilities. It motivated the institutional confinement and sterilisation of those deemed a ‘threat’ to society which continues to this day.
This is an in-person event taking place at the Linen Hall Library in Belfast across 11 – 12 November 2021.
Participants in this two-day event series will discover the history of a little-known archive, the International Tracing Service (now called the Arolsen Archives), created to find missing people after the Holocaust. Hosted at the Linen Hall Library, the programme will include a pop-up exhibition; a lecture and discussion with the co-curators Professor Dan Stone and Dr Christine Schmidt; as well as a hands-on family research workshop offering opportunities to explore the expertise and resources of The Wiener Holocaust Library and the Linen Hall Library.
We invite historians, family historians, heritage practitioners and anyone interested in the history of the Second World War, the Holocaust and its aftermath to participate and reflect on the legacies of confronting difficult histories, both on the personal and broader, historical level.
Missing since 1943, Zuzana Knobloch, a Czech Jew, was arrested in Prague with her husband, Ferdinand, for resistance activities. Zuzana’s parents were murdered after being deported from Theresienstadt in 1942. It took her surviving family many decades to uncover her likely fate.
A postwar Czech index revealed that Zuzana Knobloch had been deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau on 25 November 1943. It is presumed that she died there.
A joint virtual event
Exhibiting Gerty Simon’s work for the first time in eighty-five years
Dr Lucy Wasensteiner and Dr Barbara Warnock will discuss the genesis and development of their respective exhibitions and provide an insight into the life, work and career of German Jewish photographer Gerty Simon, who photographed many of the leading cultural and political figures of her day in Berlin, and then, in exile after 1933 in London. This year at Liebermann-Villa, Simon’s work is on display in Germany for the first time since her flight to Britain after the accession to power of the Nazi Party.
Jewish child survivors and the reconstruction of Jewish families in the aftermath of the Holocaust
By Joanna Beata Michlic
Very few Jewish parents in Nazi-occupied Poland were lucky to survive on the “Aryan” side either together or in close proximity to their children. Some parents had high hopes that they would be reunited with their children after the Holocaust, while others knew they were facing an ultimate death and could only attempt to safeguard their children’s physical survival. In the latter cases, they hoped against hope that after the Holocaust their children would be united with and raised by their surviving adult relatives in Poland or abroad. This was their final will, articulated in their emotional letters and written with pressing urgency. However, these parents’ wishes rarely came to fruition.
In this blog, I want to focus on two cases of missing child Holocaust survivors for whom searches have continued until the present day by family members. The relatives could only cling to fragmentary evidence and hope against hope that the lost family member could be identified and found.
The Bickels family before the Second World War. Private collection of Ori Bickels.
Virtual Talk: Finding Gerty: Exhibiting Gerty Simon’s work for the first time in eighty-five years
Respective exhibition curators, Dr Lucy Wasensteiner and Dr Barbara Warnock, will discuss the genesis and development of their respective exhibitions and provide an insight into the life, work and career of German Jewish photographer Gerty Simon.
As part of the Library's Jewish Resistance to the Holocaust event series, Judy Batalion will be discussing her acclaimed new book, The Light of Days: The Untold Story of Women Resistance Fighters in Hitler's Ghettos.
Virtual PhD and a Cup of Tea: ‘A Man who Did Everything Twice’: Jewish Refugee Industrialists in Britain’s Special Areas, 1936-1940
This virtual PhD and a Cup of Tea talk will explore the Jewish refugee industrialists who settled in Britain’s ‘Special Areas’ as part of the effort to revitalize the regions hit hardest by the Great Depression.
A Round Table Discussion: Confronting Eugenics: Between Word and Image
An in-person round table discussion at the Library about the relevance of eugenics in education and its impact on the welfare state occasioned by the exhibition "We are not alone": Legacies of Eugenics.
In the first of a new academic book series, Elizabeth Anthony discusses her new book, The Compromise of Return the first such social history to depict how survivors—individually and collectively—navigated post-war Vienna’s political and social setting.
Virtual Book Talk: Dance on the Razor’s Edge: Crime and Punishment in the Nazi Ghettos
Svenja Bethke will be led in conversation by Zoë Waxman in this virtual talk to discuss her new book, Dance on the Razor's Edge, which explores crime and punishment in the Nazi ghettos established in Eastern Europe during the Second World War.
The United Nations Department of Global Communications, The Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes against Humanity, The Graduate Center—CUNY and the Skirball Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies, NYU, will launch the discussion series this September. Each month, scholars will consider historical and contemporary cases, asking the questions about the relationship between the past, the present and the actions we take today to build a world in which all can live in dignity and in peace.
Exhibiting the Holocaust in the Immediate Postwar Period: Histories, Practices and Politics
The Journal of Holocaust Research is pleased to announce a Call For Papers for an upcoming Special Issue: Exhibiting the Holocaust in the Immediate Postwar Period: Histories, Practices and Politics.
Holocaust and genocide scholars, art historians, curators, museologists, and cultural researchers from a variety of disciplines are invited to consider specific case studies or comparative studies as well as larger theoretical and methodological issues. Papers that analyze exhibition design and content, as well as the social and political discourses underpinning them and their reception are welcome.
The deadline for all submissions is 1 November 2021.
Beyond the Label: Rosh Hashanah Tours at the Jewish Museum
Every day at 2.30pm between 1 and 15 September at the Jewish Museum London.
Discover more about the festival of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, at the Jewish Museum London. Explore objects that show how this festival it has been celebrated for hundreds of years from the founding of Bevis Marks Synagogue on the eve of Rosh Hashanah, to a celebration whilst on active service during the Second World War.
Letters of Love and Loss by Francis Morton - Thursday 2nd September, 7.30pm
Francis Morton’s mother, Rene, managed to come to Britain from Czechoslovakia on a domestic visa in September 1938. In his presentation, Francis uses extracts of letters, sent by his mother’s family and friends from Czechoslovakia to reconstruct the lives and fate of the family, most of whom were murdered in the Holocaust. These letters also enable Francis to present his father's dramatic escape from Europe. Extracts from the letter are read by actors and are accompanied by both personal and historical photographs. Book here.
The Story of Sam Gardener - Tuesday 12 October, 7.30pm
Maralyn Turgel tells the story of how her Polish-born father survived the Holocaust as a teenage slave labourer, in several camps, including Buchenwald concentration camp; how he was taken on a ‘death journey’ on cramped cattle trucks to Mauthausen concentration camp from where he was eventually liberated by the Americans. She tells of how a strong healthy young man transitioned into a walking skeleton and how many times he stared into the eyes of death. Sam was one of the Windermere Boys who settled in Manchester. Maralyn uses her own words plus filmed testimony from her father to tell this extremely moving account of her father’s survival. Book here.
Become a member of the Library
Demands upon the Library continue to increase as we face rising antisemitism, racism, distortion and denial of the Holocaust and genocide. We need to continue our important work to ensure our Collections are put to the best possible use and to the service of the future.
Becoming a member is a powerful way you can support us in working towards our wider mission. In return, you can enjoy our exclusive member benefits and know that you are playing a significant role in the future success of the Library.