The new grammar of Otherness: Europe, the Shoah, and the Jews

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Discusses the postwar passage of the Nazi deportations and extermination of the Jews from an ideological, patriotic, and anti-fascist memory to an "ethnic" memory of the Holocaust, which occurred in the European historical narrative from 1945 to the 1990s. This passage assigned the role of victim to the Jews and placed them beyond the framework of the European nations, now construed in ethnic terms. Traces the twisted path in the transformation of the historical memory: from postwar Europe which wanted to forget the past, through the gradual realization of the dimensions of the Holocaust and of the responsibility of the European nations for its perpetration, to the post-Cold War period when the Holocaust became the pivotal point in the narrative of the Nazi war and genocide. The latter kind of memory, "ethnic" memory, transforms the Jews into the "Other", a symbol of all victims, and permits the writing of apologetic histories which absolve European nations of any responsibility for the victimization of Jews.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-126
Number of pages22
JournalJewish History
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2010

Bibliographical note

Another version appeared in Italian as "La Shoà, la memoria e il presente, 1945-2000" in "Rassegna Mensile di Israel" 77,1-2 (2011) 1-27.

RAMBI Publications

  • Rambi Publications
  • Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945) -- Europe -- Influence
  • Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945) -- Historiography
  • Jews -- Europe -- History -- 1945-
  • Jews -- Identity


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