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Constructing Memory

Architectural Narratives of Holocaust Museums

Stephanie Rotem

This book reveals the critical role of architecture in the assimilation of the ideologies and values conveyed at Holocaust museums around the world. Through the architectural analysis of sixteen museums, social, cultural and political agendas will be unfolded.
While the distance in time and place raises the need to create innovative forms of display to reach an audience removed from the Holocaust, the degree to which this can be done by the museums’ exhibits alone is limited. This book shows that architecture, as an abstract form of expression, plays a major role in the conception of Holocaust museums. By conveying values that cannot otherwise be expressed, the museums’ architecture becomes integral to its narrative and, through it, to the construction of collective memories of the Holocaust.


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Endnotes 187


187 Endnotes Introduction 1 P. Nora, “Between Memory and History: Les lieux de mémoire“, Representations, 26, 1989, pp. 7–24. 2 D. Gutwein, “The Privatization of the Holocaust: Memory, Historiography and Politics”, Israel Studies, 14 (1), 2009, pp. 36–64. 3 Gutwein, p. 37. 4 The “Americanization of the Holocaust” is a term coined by Michael Berenbaum, executive-director of the USHMM. This term and its implications will be further discussed in Chapter 5. 5 This is a commonly used expression, see for example: J. Feldman, “Marking the Boundaries of the Enclave: Defining the Israeli Collective through the ‘Poland Experience’”, Israel Studies, 7 (2), 2002, pp. 84–114; S. Ury, “Who, What, When, Where, and Why Is Polish Jewry? Envisioning, Constructing, and Possessing Polish Jewry”, Jewish Social Studies, 6 (3), 2000, pp. 205–228; K. Connolly, “Museum to Mark Jewish Life in Poland”, Guardian, July 18, 2002. 6 T. W. Adorno, “Cultural Criticism and Society”, Prisms, Cambridge, 1981 [1955], p. 34. 7 B. A. Kaplan, Unwanted Beauty: Aesthetic Pleasure in Holocaust Representation, Urbana, 2007, p. 2. 8 E. van Alphen, Caught by History: Holocaust Effects in Contemporary Art, Literature, and Theory, Stanford, 1997, p. 19. 9 Kaplan, p. 1. 10 T. W. Adorno, “Engagement”, Notenzur Literatur III, Frankfurt, 1965; quoted in Z. Amishai-Maisels, Depiction and Interpretation: The Influence of the Holocaust on the Visual Arts, Oxford, 1993, p. 36. 11 M. Hirsch, Family Frames: Photography, Narrative and Postmemory, Cambridge, MA, 1997, p. 23. 12 van Alphen, p. 11. 13 J....

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