The Afterlife of the Shoah in Central and Eastern European Cultures is a collection of essays by literary scholars from Germany, the US, and Central Eastern Europe offering insight into the specific ways of representing the Shoah and its aftereffects as well as its entanglement with other catastrophic events in the region.
Introducing the conceptual frame of postcatastrophe, the collected essays explore the discursive and artistic space the Shoah occupies in the countries between Moscow and Berlin. Postcatastrophe is informed by the knowledge of other concepts of "post" and shares their insight into forms of transmission and latency; in contrast to them, explores the after-effects of extreme events on a collective, aesthetic, and political rather than a personal level. The articles use the concept of postcatastrophe as a key to understanding the entangled and conflicted cultures of remembrance in postsocialist literatures and the arts dealing with events, phenomena, and developments that refuse to remain in the past and still continue to shape perceptions of today’s societies in Eastern Europe.
As a contribution to memory studies as well as to literary criticism with a special focus on Shoah remembrance after socialism, this book is of great interest to students and scholars of European history, and those interested in historical memory more broadly.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Living and Writing in Postcatastrophic Times; 1 Postcatastrophic Aesthetics - ANNA ARTWIŃSKA AND ANJA TIPPNER; 2 Grasping for the Past: Postcatastrophic Writing of Catastrophic Biographies - IRENA GRUDZIŃSKA-GROSS; PART I The Afterlife of Holocaust Objects and Spaces; 3 Small Acts of Repair: The Unclaimed Legacy of the Romanian Holocaust - MARIANNE HIRSCH AND LEO SPITZER; 4 The Post-Jewish Today. Tracing Material Culture in the Postcatastrophic Polish Poetry - ANNA ARTWIŃSKA; 5 Libeskind and History - MICHAEL MENG; 6 Globalization, Universalization, and Forensic Turn: Postcatastrophic Memorial Museums - LJILJANA RADONIĆ; 7 The Smellscape of Jewish Lublin—and its Afterlife - STEPHANIE WEISMANN; PART II Contested and Entangled Memories; 8 Addressing the Void: The Absence of Documents and the Difficulties of Representing the Shoah in Postcatastrophic Russian Jewish Literature - ANJA TIPPNER; 9 After the Catastrophe. Polish Reactions to the Holocaust in the 1940s and after 2010. Illustrated by the Examples of Kazimierz Wyka, Marcin Zaremba, and Andrzej Leder - KATARZYNA CHMIELEWSKA; 10 Commemorating the Shoah in the GDR’s (Post-)Perpetrator Society - ALEXANDER WALTHER; 11 Explaining German Expulsions through the Lens of Postcatastrophe: New Discussions Concerning the Shoah and the Expulsions - JOHN C. SWANSON; 12 The Silence Cartel. Representations of the Genocide of Roma in Yugoslav and Post-Yugoslav Literature - DAVOR BEGANOVIĆ; PART III Postcatastrophic Aesthetics and Re-Readings; 13 Lost and Saved in Translation: Katja Petrowskaja’s Maybe Esther. A Family Story - BARBARA BREYSACH; 14 "There’s No Such Thing as an Innocent Eye": Acts of Seeing and Ethical Aspects in Postmemorial Aesthetic - MAGDALENA MARSZAŁEK; 15 Who’s Afraid of Walter Benjamin? Dealing with the Problem of "Universalization" of Shoah Narration in Czech Literature - AGATA FIRLEJ; 16 Postcatastrophic Approaches to the Shoah in Contemporary Czech Poetry: Radek Malý’s Collection Little Darkness - REINHARD IBLER; PART IV Re-Mediating Catastrophes in Contemporary (Pop-)Culture; 17 Holocaust Topoi, or "How Long Can We Punish Ourselves for a Grandfather Holding a Match?": Jedwabne and the Pop-Cultural Afterlife of the Catastrophe - MARTA TOMCZOK AND PAWEŁ WOLSKI; 18 The Visuality of the Holocaust in the Digital Environment: Examining the Case of Pinterest - KAMIL ČINÁTL AND ČENĚK PÝCHA; 19 Art, Trauma, and the Shoah: Postcatastrophic Narration and Contemporary Art from Hungary - JAN ELANTKOWSKI; 20 The Image of People Jumping from Windows in the Warsaw Ghetto: Photographs of The Stroop Report in the Context of Polish Holocaust Remembrance - ARIKO KATO
Anna Artwińska is a Professor of Slavic Literature and Culture Studies and Chair of the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Leipzig, Germany. Her main research interests are the memory of communism, postcatastrophic representation of the Shoah, the concept of generation, auto/biographical writing and gender, and postcolonial studies.
Anja Tippner is a Full Professor of Slavic Literatures at Hamburg University. She works on concepts of documentation and life-writing as well as representations of the Shoah and extreme experiences in Russian, Polish, and Czech literature. Her current research focuses on documentary and (collaborative) life-writing after socialism.