Accepted Paper:

Silenced memories of holocaust victims and heritages in the context of the genocide collective memories  


Carole Lemee (Université Bordeaux & UMR 5319)

Paper Short Abstract:

The paper will look at the ways memories linked with various Holocaust social experiences were and/or still are silenced in the collective memory of the genocide. The aim is to question the possible or utopian unification of different memories facing internal and external collective memories

Paper long abstract:

This paper aims at examining how several memories of Holocaust victims were silenced in many European countries between 1945 and the 2000s because these memories are not linked with social experiences of the genocide that were mainly retained in the global construction of the Holocaust memory carried outside social spaces of Jewish victims and their descendants. However, this phenomenon can be also observed sometimes inside some Jewish spaces. So, it raises in both cases the Halbwachsian question of the unification of various memories in a collective memory, at both internal and external level. It shows us clearly in the social work of the restitution, the problematic of the co-existence of different situations that were undergone inside a same ensemble (e.g., the Jewish victims), the tensions existing between internal and external collective memories, and also tensions inside social Jewish spaces between memories and heritages of Holocaust victims and those of Jews whose families lived formerly in colonized areas during the genocide and who returned for example in France after the decolonization. This approach is based on fieldwork carried out for more than twenty years in various countries in Western, Central and Baltic Europe. The theoretical aspects will be especially illustrated with the studied situations concerning the violence undergone by victims during persecution events related to the formation of ten deportation convoys from Bordeaux to Drancy (the transit camp in France to death camps), and it will be also illustrated with situations studied in other countries.

Panel Heri014
Heritage of silenced memories