Contested Heritage: Jewish Cultural Property after 1945

Caroline Jessen (Editor), Lina Barouch, Yehuda Dvorkin, Elisabeth Gallas (Editor), Anna Holzer-Kawalko (Editor), Anna Holzer-Kawałko, Iris Lauterbach, Amit Levy, Adi Livny, Enrico Lucca, Stefanie Mahrer, Gil Rubin, Joachim Schlör, Bilha Shilo, Yonatan Shiloh-Dayan, ʻAdah Ṿardi, Yfaat Weiss, Yechiel Weizmann, Yfaat Weiss (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportBook


In the wake of the Nazi regime's policies, European Jewish cultural property was dispersed, dislocated, and destroyed. Books, manuscripts, and artworks were either taken by their fleeing owners and were transferred to different places worldwide, or they fell prey to systematic looting and destruction under German occupation. Until today, a significant amount of items can be found in private and public collections in Germany as well as abroad with an unclear or disputed provenance. Contested Heritage. Jewish Cultural Property after 1945 illuminates the political and cultural implications of Jewish cultural property looted and displaced during the Holocaust. The volume includes seventeen essays, accompanied by newly discovered archival material and illustrations, which address a wide range of topics: from the shifting meaning and character of the objects themselves, the so-called object biographies, their restitution processes after 1945, conflicting ideas about their appropriate location, political interests in their preservation, actors and networks involved in salvage operations, to questions of intellectual and cultural transfer processes revolving around the moving objects and their literary resonances. Thus, it offers a fascinating insight into lesser-known dimensions of the aftermath of the Holocaust and the history of Jews in postwar Europe.
Preface / Elisabeth Gallas, Anna Holzer-Kawalko, Caroline Jessen, Yfaat Weiss -- Shifting meanings: Objects, emotions, memory -- Capsules of time, tradition, and memory: Salvaging Jewish books after 1945 -- Affirming ownership, obscuring provenance? Émigré collections in Israel and Germany after 1945 / Caroline Jessen -- Bücherfreunde: German-Jewish Émigrés as unintentional guardians of German books / Yonatan Shiloh-Dayan -- Eliminating the traces: The postwar fate of the synagogue in Olkusz, Poland / Yechiel Weizman -- Salvage and loss: Dealing with the fragments -- Art restitution in the aftermath of World War II: The central collection point in Munich / Iris Lauterbach -- When YIVO was defined by territory: Two perspectives on the restitution of YIVO’s collections / Bilha Shilo -- The dual dynamics of postwar cultural restoration: On the salvage and destruction of the Breslau rabbinical library / Anna Holzer-Kawalko -- A safe home for German Jewry: Hugo Bergman, Ozrot ha-Golah, and his return to Europe / Enrico Lucca -- Forming archives: Personal estates and institutional collections -- A discipline in a suitcase: The scientific Nachlass of Josef Horovitz / Amit Levy -- A history of adversity: The historical archive of the Hebrew university of Jerusalem / Adi Livny -- Shifting centers: Rebuilding Jewish culture -- The tricks of memory: Salo W. Baron, Cecil Roth, and the salvaging of Jewish property in Europe / Yfaat Weiss -- Aftermath: Salo W. Baron in the postwar Jewish world / Gil S. Rubin -- Saga of the chandelier: A Jewish-English debate of cultural restitution / Yehuda Dvorkin -- Transfer, rupture, continuity: Reflecting materiality -- Reflection on books as vehicles of cultural transaction: The design work of Moshe Spitzer / Ada Wardi -- The uncanny of the Schocken villa: Interior design and objects of exile / Stefanie Mahrer -- Reflections
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationGöttingen
PublisherVandenhoeck & Ruprecht
Number of pages221
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

On verso preliminary page: Leibniz Institute for Jewish History and Culture - Simon Dubnow.


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