Please note that from 18 October, the Library will also be open on Mondays.
Visitors no longer need to pre-book to visit the Library’s Reading Room or exhibition space.
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's Autumn Exhibition
This Fascist Life: Radical Right Movements in Interwar Europe
6 October 2021 - 4 February 2022
Senior Curator, Dr Barbara Warnock, installing the Library's new exhibition.
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.
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.
Abstracts are invited for twenty-minute papers for this conference exploring the position of the radical right around the world today. Although fascism was defeated militarily at the end of the Second World War, neo-fascist and radical right movements have continued to spread racial hatred and to challenge liberal democracies ever since. The twentieth and twenty-first centuries have seen right-wing political parties, white supremacist scenes, extremist organisations, and governments promoting ultranationalist chauvinism in various forms. By interrogating the frames, repertoires, mobilisation strategies, and activities of the radical right, this conference seeks to understand how the radical right functions in today’s world so that we might be better equipped to combat it in the future.
In this lecture, Professor Jan Grabowski will discuss how scholars of the Holocaust find themselves confronted with the hostile reactions of various states pursuing the policies of Holocaust distortion. The situation has acquired particular importance and urgency in Poland, where the authorities have introduced a series of measures intended to freeze academic debate, hinder independent research and intimidate scholars whose writings are perceived as opposed to the official, state-approved historical narrative.
Virtual Talks and Workshops for Students and Teachers
We are delighted to announce that the Library’s new free educational series for the 2021 Autumn Term is now open for booking.
Run by the Library’s experienced education team and guided by the British curriculum, the programme of talks and workshops are aimed at teachers and students of the Holocaust wishing to deepen their understanding of the Holocaust through engagement with the Library’s unique and historic archive.
The series will help participants to critically consider each topic and explore the variety of ways in which it can be approached in an educational setting.
Details of upcoming events are outlined below.
Monday 18 October, 4 – 4.50pm
Virtual Student Talk: An Introduction to the Holocaust
In this virtual talk, aimed at GCSE and A-Level students, the Library’s Head of Education, Dr Barbara Warnock, will draw upon the Library’s rich and diverse collections of original historical material to provide an introduction to the key events and the main features of the Holocaust.
This virtual talk, aimed at GCSE and A-Level students will utilise sources from the Library’s unique archive to examine the Nazi rise to power. It will explore the aftermath of the First World War, the role of the Weimar Republic, the early years of the Nazi Party formation and how the Nazis ultimately consolidated their power.
Virtual Teacher Workshop: Life Before the Holocaust
This virtual workshop, aimed at British secondary school teachers and educators, will use a variety of sources from the Library’s archive to explore the diversity of life in Europe before the Holocaust.
We are pleased to announce the publication of a new educational resource exploring the Nazi rise to power on The Holocaust Explained.
The resource, which has been designed for teachers to use with their students, includes downloadable primary sources from the Library’s unique archive, a worksheet, suggested activities, contextual information, and a glossary to help students to explore the various factors involved in the Nazi Party's rise to power.
A Nazi Party election poster, produced in the early 1930s, using the slogan Arbeit und Brot (Eng: work and bread). Wiener Holocaust Library Collections.
A new film by the Library
An Introduction to the History of Roma
The Library is pleased to share this newly created video exploring the history of Roma, produced in collaboration with Professor Becky Taylor at the University of East Anglia (UEA) and Tani Gessi from the Roma Support Group.
This visual resource was created to give school students an overview of the history of Roma communities, from their migration from India through to the early 1930s, deepening their knowledge of the group.
The video is the first publication in a larger scheme of educational activities on Roma history and the Roma Genocide that the Library is currently in the process of curating. In addition to the video, this scheme will include lesson resources and a workshop series.
The Library is hiring!
Work with Us
Community Engagement Coordinator
Part-time, Three-year (36 months) fixed term with possible remote working Salary: £15 per hour or £27,300 p.a. pro-rata; 2 days per week Closing date for applications: 8 October 2021; Interviews to be held 11 or 12 October 2021 via Zoom.
The Library is embarking on an ambitious plan to enhance its research support using the digital ITS archive. We are expanding our ITS archive research team to refine and improve the core functions of our family and academic research support and to expand accessibility through a national outreach programme designed to reach new audiences and raise awareness of the archive across the UK. This three-year programme, Recovery and Repair: Supporting Jewish Family Histories of the Holocaust throughout Britain, launched at the beginning of September 2021. The Library is recruiting a part-time Community Engagement Coordinator to support the Library’s ambitious plans for enhancing its research support offering based on using the UK’s copy of the digital ITS archive.
The Recovery and Repair project will target locations with sizable Jewish communities and sites of Jewish heritage with a bespoke programme of family research and personal document collections preservation support: skills workshops for local archivists and community leaders, consultations for family researchers, as well as lectures and exhibition-based outreach for the wider public.
Dr Lucy Wasensteiner, Director of Liebermann Villa and curator of their exhibition, presents the exhibition to Ambassador Michaela Küchler of the German Foreign Ministry, and the Library’s Dr Toby Simpson.
The Library's collections in Berlin
Gerty Simon: Berlin/ London - A Photographer in Exile
Dr Toby Simpson, Director of The Wiener Holocaust Library:
“My favourite moment from our visit was seeing the original Gerty Simon prints from our collection on display. Standing in the city where Gerty first made her name as a photographer, I was reminded of how far these portraits had travelled, how long they had to wait to be properly appreciated, and how easily they could have been lost forever.”
(right) Dr Barbara Warnock, curator of the Library’s Gerty Simon exhibition, outside Liebermann Villa in Wannsee
This show is drawn entirely from the Library’s collection of Simon’s original photographic prints and documents and follows the Library’s 2019 exhibition Berlin/London: The Lost Photographs of Gerty Simon. Simon, a Jewish German photographer, was forced into exile in Germany by the Nazi accession to power. The Library is delighted to see Gerty Simon’s work on display in Berlin, ninety years since her last exhibition there. The exhibition has been widely covered in the German press and has received a very positive reception from visitors.
Archive Launch Event with Q&A
Final Account – Third Reich Testimonies
Join us on Monday 25 October, 6-7.30pm, for the launch of a major new collection of nearly 300 filmed interviews with 'Third Reich' contemporaries.
This important resource enhances our understanding of everyday life in Nazi Germany and Nazi-occupied Europe, and of post-war reflections on responsibility, complicity, and justice, of ‘ordinary’ people who were implicated in, witnesses to, or on the periphery of war and genocide. The collection includes accounts by former members of the Waffen-SS, SS, and Wehrmacht, secretaries in National Socialist and military organisations, alongside farm workers and homemakers.
British documentary filmmaker Luke Holland, who passed away on 10 June 2020, spent nearly a decade between 2008 and 2017 to conduct some 500 hours of interviews in multiple locations with more than 250 elderly people, including men and women from Germany, Austria, France, the Netherlands, and Belgium. His feature-length documentary film ‘Final Account’ premiered in 2020.
Speakers at the launch event will include Sam Pope (ZEF Productions), Professor Mary Fulbrook (UCL), Dr Stefanie Rauch (UCL), Mileva Stupar (Institute National de l’Audiovisuel), and Dr Toby Simpson (The Wiener Holocaust Library).
The archival project was initiated and directed by Luke Holland (ZEF Productions), in association with the Institute National de l’Audiovisuel (INA), UCL, and The Wiener Holocaust Library, and Founding Partners, Pears Foundation.
Researchers will be able to access the collection at the Institute National de l’Audiovisuel, the Library, and UCL from autumn 2021.
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.
Virtual Book Launch: Musicians’ Exile in Shanghai, 1938–1949
In this virtual lecture, Sophie Fetthauer will present her recently published monograph exploring the experiences of the musicians who fled Nazi persecution in Germany and Austria to Shanghai from 1938 to 1949.
To celebrate the recent publication of The Problems of Genocide, the Library will be hosting a virtual panel to explore the themes outlined and considered in this major new work. Speakers include author Dirk Moses and guest speaker Christine Achinger. The panel will be chaired by Professor Philippe Sands.
Virtual Exhibition Talk: “The Mussolini of the North”: A Transnational Look at Finnish Interwar Fascism
In this virtual lecture, Marja Jalava will follow the transnational turn within the broader field of fascist studies by focusing on the Lapua Movement and the Patriotic People’s Movement as Finnish manifestations of a European-wide, transnational mobilisation.
Being Human 2021 – Fate Unknown: The Search for the Missing after the Holocaust
This is an in-person event taking place at the Linen Hall Library in Belfast. A pop-up exhibition, drinks reception and talks on the history of the collection and the search for the missing after the Second World War. The discussion will include themes raised by the exhibition, including war, migration, rupture, survival and victimhood.
Being Human 2021 – Recovering the Personal in Difficult Histories: A Family Research Workshop
This is an in-person event taking place at the Linen Hall Library in Belfast. This workshop will provide a demonstration of the ITS archive and a skills workshop as well as the opportunity for short one-on-one consultations. Participants can navigate the ITS archive partially from their mobile devices and are invited to bring with them their family trees and research questions.
Vienna: The New Holocaust Memorial and Walls of Names
Join us on Thursday 21 October, 6.30pm for a virtual joint event with the Second Generation Network and the Library.
H.E. Michael Zimmermann, The Austrian Ambassador to the United Kingdom, will open the event before Dr Barbara Warnock of The Wiener Holocaust Library gives an outline of the The Holocaust in Austria. Main speaker Frau Hannah Lessing, Secretary General of the National Fund of the Republic of Austria for Victims of National Socialism and founding member of the Shoah Walls of Names Memorial Association, will talk about the new Holocaust Memorial in Vienna, describe the official opening ceremony on 9 November 2021.
Frau Lessing will also explain how members can participate in the November 9th ceremony.
There will be an opportunity for Q & A following the presentations.
Virtual Talk: Finding Gerty: Exhibiting Gerty Simon’s work for the first time in eighty-five years
An online English-language event with the curators of The Wiener Holocaust Library’s 'Berlin-London: The Lost Photographs of Gerty Simon' exhibition and Liebermann-Villa am Wannsee’s current show, 'Gerty Simon. Berlin/ London. A Photographer in Exile'.
In the first of a new academic book series, Elizabeth Anthony discussed 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.
A Brief History of Holocaust Denial and Distortion
Holocaust denial and Holocaust distortion are not new. Knowing the history of Holocaust denial and distortion—from the Nazi era to today—can help us better recognise when these tactics are being employed. This can help prevent us from believing and spreading such disinformation, which harms democracies and threatens open, pluralistic societies. Read about this history and other topics on the new blog from #ProtectTheFacts, a campaign launched by the European Commission, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), the United Nations and UNESCO to raise awareness of Holocaust distortion and how to counter it.
How the Holocaust Determines Professional Choices of the Second and Third Generations
Professor Judy Baumel-Schwarz of Bar Ilan University in Israel will share her latest research findings with us. Network Members who completed her questionnaires will recall Judy was investigating 2g and 3g researchers to see whether there was a link, conscious or otherwise, between their Holocaust background and their having chosen a research profession (not necessarily connected with the Holocaust), whether in the academic world, law, medicine, or other forms of research.
Some 2g and 3g grew up in homes where the Holocaust was discussed openly while in others it was a silent but constant accompaniment by its very absence. In some cases, the connection between a Holocaust-related background and personal/professional decisions is overt and obvious. In others it is more subtle, some initially stated that there is no connection at all.
Judy discovered rumination and self-exploration often uncover possible connections between our choices and our background and their significance is dependent upon a subjective understanding of one's past and present.
Judy's talk will center upon the dynamics of the research project, and its initial conclusions. Attendees can share their own thoughts and experiences during the Q + A that will follow the talk.
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.