Centre for German-Jewish Studies, University of Sussex

Since its establishment in 1994, the Centre has developed into a major institution for the study of the history, culture and thought of Jews in Central Europe and for the training of a new generation of teachers and researchers in this field.

Given the location of the Centre, a key objective is to research the history of Jewish refugees and their families to the United Kingdom during and after the Second World War. The Centre also focuses on projects related to the history of anti-Semitism, the Holocaust and its effects on post-war history until today.

The Centre's archival collection, located in the University of Sussex Library, is being developed in accordance with these main themes. There is a particular interest in materials documenting the histories of German-Jewish families since the Enlightenment, including diaries, letters, oral testimony, survival narratives and other biographical sources recording the history of refugees.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

All visits to the Centre for German-Jewish Studies archive are by appointment only. Researchers using the Collections are advised to write or telephone in advance stating the purpose of their visit. Researchers are also required to complete an Application for Access form, sign an undertaking to comply with the regulations that govern the protection of archival materials, and to adhere to copyright regulations.

The Arnold Daghani Collection:
Arnold Daghani (1909-1985) came from a German-speaking Jewish family in Suczawa, in the Bukowina, then on the eastern borders of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, now Suceava in Romania.

In June 1942 Daghani and his wife were deported to the slave labour camp of Mikhailowka (south west Ukraine), from where they managed to escape in July 1943 only a few months before the camp was liquidated. In 1958 the Daghanis left Romania, emigrating to Israel (1958-59), France (1960-70), Switzerland (1970-77) and finally England (1977-85), settling in Hove, near Brighton.

In 1987 the Arnold Daghani Trust donated a substantial collection of around 6,000 works to the University of Sussex. In 1997 the collection entered the archives of the Centre for German-Jewish Studies. The collection contains many of the complex and elaborate albums of drawings, paintings and writings documenting Daghani's experiences in Mikhailowka and the ghetto at Bershad, such as What a Nice World and 1942 1943 And Thereafter (Sporadic records till 1977). These albums include original watercolours Daghani made secretly at this time.

The Elton/Ehrenberg Papers:
In 2000 the Centre for German-Jewish studies was proud to receive from Professor Lewis Elton the generous gift of an important collection of family papers for its archive. The Elton family, whose name was orginally Ehrenberg, included members who occupied politically and culturally prominent roles in German-Jewish life.

The collection fills 36 archive boxes and consist of various kinds of material, including the correspondence of several family members, original works of fiction, memoirs, journals, certificates and awards and numerous photographic records of the immediate family of Victor and Eva Ehrenberg.

The historical period covered by the material stretches from the Enlightenment, to the late twentieth century. The Papers capture the development of a family group that exemplifies both the attempted synthesis of Jewish and German cultures in Germany, and the acculturation of German-Jewish refugees in Britain.

Collection details

Archives, Fine Art, Literature, Religion, Weapons and War, World Cultures

Key artists and exhibits

  • Arnold Daghani
  • Samuel Meyer Ehrenberg
  • Victor Ehrenberg
  • Eva Ehrenberg
  • Geoffrey Elton
  • Lewis Elton
  • Max Born
  • Siegfried Sommer

Centre for German-Jewish Studies, University of Sussex
The Library
University of Sussex
Brighton & Hove
East Sussex




Daghani collection: Dr Deborah Schultz


Elton collection: Samira Teuteberg



Daghani collection: Dr Deborah Schultz

01273 877109

Elton collection: Samira Teuteberg

01273 877184


01273 877174

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.