The Wiener Library

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The Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust & Genocide is one of the world's leading and most extensive archives on the Holocaust and Nazi era. The Library's unique collection of over one million items includes published and unpublished works, press cuttings, photographs and eyewitness testimony. It provides a resource to oppose anti-Semitism and other forms of prejudice and racism.

Venue Type:

Library, Archive, Museum

Opening hours

Monday to Friday 10.00-17.00
Tuesday 10.00-19.30

Closed: Bank Holidays
First day of Rosh Hashanah
First day of Yom Kippur
Christmas & New Year

Admission charges

Free entry to the public.
Photo ID and proof of address/letter of introduction required on first visit.
Only Members or Friends of the Library are permitted to borrow books.

Getting there

By tube:
•Russell Square (Piccadilly line)
•Goodge Street (Northern line)
•St Pancras International (Metropolitan, Northern, Circle, Victoria and Hammersmith & City lines)

By bus:
The following buses stop nearby:
7, 59, 68, X68, 91, 168, 188

Access:
We have recently moved to new premises in a historic location on Russell Square. At this time, access for some disabled people is limited and we encourage visitors to contact us in advance if they are concerned about access.
•The ground floor exhibition area is accessible only by a flight of five steps. We will be installing step-free access in Spring 2012. Once inside the building, all areas are accessible to wheelchairs via the lift.
•There are adapted toilets on the basement level.
•The nearest step-free underground station is King’s Cross, St Pancras.

The Wiener Library collects material related to the Holocaust, its causes and legacies. The Library has holdings of approx 65,000 items searchable online including books, pamphlets, periodicals and documents. The collection includes rare eye-witness accounts and an extensive press cuttings archive. The Library holds a photo archive of over 10,000 images, in the process of being digitised and made accessible through the website. Up to one third of the collection contains pre-war material and the Library continues to add to its collections.

Collection details

Archives, Photography, Religion, Social History, World Cultures

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Book Launch: Life is War: Surviving Dictatorship in Communist Albania by Dr Shannon Woodcock

Book Launch: Life is War: Surviving Dictatorship in Communist Albania by Dr Shannon Woodcock

  • 25 May 2016 6:30-8pm *on now

Dr Shannon Woodcock’s new book, Life is War: Surviving Dictatorship in Communist Albania, turns to the small nation of Albania. From sheltering Jewish refugees from genocide in World War Two, this book explores how the multicultural and multi faith Albanian community was attacked by the Communist Party between 1944 and 1991 in order to create a homogenous and violently policed atheist state. This work is a contribution to the field of genocide studies as it explores the persecution of racial and ethnic groups in the context of Enver Hoxha’s unique application of socialist political ideology. Through following the life stories of six individuals, Life is War uses oral history to bring the reader into the homes and memories of those who survived Albanian communist persecution. Dr Woodcock will speak about ethnic and racial persecution within the uniquely isolated and oppressive Albanian communist state. This period in Albanian history (1946 –1991) is framed by the Holocaust and the Yugoslav wars, and provides the missing link in terms of genocide studies and history between World War Two, when the Albanian community famously sheltered and protected Jewish refugees from Europe, and the 1990s, when the Albanian community of Kosovo was the target of Milosevic’s genocidal “Operation Horseshoe.” Life is War explores how racial concepts and stereotypes, alongside gendered stereotypes, were vital to the organisation of the communist state.

Dr Shannon Woodcock is a genocide scholar who has held the Pearl Resnick Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and published widely in the field of the Holocaust of Romani people in Romania. She is currently a research associate in the Faculty of Creative Industries at Queensland University of Technology, Australia, where her current project examines colonial genocide in Australia.

Admission

Admission is free, but booking is essential as space is limited.

Website

http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Whats-On?item=244

Book Launch: Matters of Testimony: Interpreting the Scrolls of Auschwitz

Book Launch: Matters of Testimony: Interpreting the Scrolls of Auschwitz

  • 2 June 2016 6-8pm

In 1944, members of the Sonderkommando—the “special squads,” composed almost exclusively of Jewish prisoners, who ensured the smooth operation of the gas chambers and had firsthand knowledge of the extermination process—buried on the grounds of Auschwitz-Birkenau a series of remarkable eyewitness accounts of Nazi genocide. This careful and penetrating study examines anew these “Scrolls of Auschwitz,” which were gradually recovered, in damaged and fragmentary form, in the years following the camp’s liberation. It painstakingly reconstructs their historical context and textual content, revealing complex literary works that resist narrow moral judgment and engage difficult questions about the limits of testimony.

Nicholas Chare is Associate Professor of Art History at the Université de Montréal. He is the author of Auschwitz and Afterimages: Abjection, Witnessing and Representation and After Francis Bacon: Synaesthesia and Sex in Paint, and the co-editor, with Dominic Williams, of Representing Auschwitz: At the Margins of Testimony.

Dominic Williams is Montague Burton Fellow in Jewish Studies at the University of Leeds. He has published articles on modernism, the First World War, contemporary poetry and the Holocaust. In addition to co-editing Representing Auschwitz, he has co-edited, with Fabio A. Durão, Modernist Group Dynamics: The Politics and Poetics of Friendship.

The event will consist of a brief talk from Dominic Williams, followed by a round-table discussion and then a reception.

Participants:

Anne Karpf Reader in Professional Writing and Cultural Inquiry, London Metropolitan University.

Dan Stone Professor of Modern History, Royal Holloway, University of London.

Zoe Waxman Senior Research Fellow, Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies

Admission

Admission is free but booking is essential as space is limited

Website

http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Whats-On?item=247

Film Showing and Discussion: My Grandmother’s Sitting Room

Film Showing and Discussion: My Grandmother’s Sitting Room

  • 8 June 2016 6:30-8pm

A showing of My Grandmother's Sitting Room, a short film depicting the journey to find the grandmother filmmaker Laure Levy never knew. Levy’s grandmother, Franze Levy, was lost in the Holocaust, and in the film Laure visits Franze’s old home near Leipzig in Germany - the meeting place of her literary set that included the likes of Thomas Mann. As this circle drew Franze into danger, we pass from the comfort of her sitting room to a period of growing insecurity, and her arrest and escape to Holland. The discovery of a recent item takes us to a remote building outside Amsterdam as we pass from the height of German culture to Nazi brutality.

For Laure, making this film has been the first step in documenting the extraordinary lives of the women in her family who were killed before she was born. The film will be followed by a discussion with the filmmaker.

Admission

Admission is free but booking is essential as space is limited

Website

http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Whats-On?item=254

Exhibition in Focus: The Channel Islands, Nazi persecution and the Holocaust

Exhibition in Focus: The Channel Islands, Nazi persecution and the Holocaust

  • 9 June 2016 6-8pm

The history of Nazi persecution in the Channel Islands during the German occupation of 1940-1945 has long been marginalised, even within the islands themselves. No ‘roll of honour’ was ever kept of those who were sent to prisons and concentration camps on the continent for acts of resistance. The exact numbers of those sent away are still not known. The memory of many of these people was not held in high esteem in the decades after the war. Discussion of the Jews deported from the Channel Islands was an even more delicate subject for discussion, as their story potentially involved the tabooed c-word (collaboration). This lecture sheds light on the silence surrounding victims of Nazism in the Channel Islands and gives voice to some of their extraordinary stories.

This lecture is part of a series of programming designed to highlight aspects of the exhibition, Dilemmas, Choices, Responses: Britain and the Holocaust, co-curated by the Holocaust Educational Trust’s Regional Ambassadors and the Wiener Library. Among other topics, the exhibition includes documents and pamphlets on Nazi persecution in the Channel Islands. Participants will have the opportunity to view the exhibition prior to the lecture.

Dr Gilly Carr is a Senior Lecturer in Archaeology at the University of Cambridge, where she is also a Fellow and Director of Studies at St Catharine’s College. Her research focuses on victims of Nazism in the Channel Islands, post-conflict heritage studies, and conflict archaeology. She is the author of over 50 publications. Recent publications include Protest, Defiance and Resistance in the Channel Islands: German Occupation 1940-1945 (Bloomsbury 2014, with Paul Sanders and Louise Willmot) and Legacies of Occupation: Heritage, memory and archaeology in the Channel Islands (Springer 2014). She has recently made a BBC documentary about her research which will be screened in May 2016.

Admission

Admission is free but booking is essential as space is limited.

Website

http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Whats-On?item=257

My Own Dear Brother

Book talk: My Own Dear Brother

  • 15 June 2016 6:30-8pm

Join us at the Wiener Library for a talk by Holly Müller on her recently published novel, My Own Dear Brother. Holly will talk about her novel and give readings, and discuss the inspiration behind it. Set in Nazi-controlled Austria, My Own Dear Brother explores the themes of family loyalty and conflict in a time of war, inspired in part by the author’s own family’s experiences. There will be an opportunity to purchase a signed copy of the novel at a reduced price on the night.

My Own Dear Brother
It is 1944, and war has taken the men in Nazi-controlled Austria to the front line. For thirteen-year-old Ursula Hildesheim life in the village of Felddorf remains almost as it was: bullied by her schoolmates, idly thieving from the village shop, enlisted in endless chores by her mama and sister and running wild with her adored older brother Anton. But when Russian prisoners escape from the local concentration camp, her mama starts an affair with a married man, her friend goes missing and her brother's allegiance to the Hitler Youth emerges in shocking ways, Ursula finds herself alone, disturbed by dark memories, and surrounded by threat. In this new world of conflict, Ursula discovers a bravery she has never known before and is forced to recognise that danger comes not only from the enemy at the door but from the enemy within. My Own Dear Brother is a remarkable coming-of-age story and an unflinching study of both cruelty and courage. Rich in folklore, it introduces a daring young heroine and a powerful new literary voice.

Reviews
“A powerful and absorbing novel that pulls you deep into the troubled war years of its young heroine. Love and loyalty are the book's real themes, and the manipulation of the innocent. Brilliantly done” – Esther Freud, author of Mr Mac and Me

“A moving portrait of a girl forced to come of age in a world at war” – Sunday Times

“Intensely imagined” – Independent

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Admission is free but booking is essential as space is limited. To reserve your ticket please visit www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Whats-On?item=259

Website

http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Whats-On?item=259

A World Behind Wire: The Nazi Camps and Ghettos

A World Behind Wire: The Nazi Camps and Ghettos

  • 14 July 2016 6:30-8pm

Everyone knows that Nazi Germany ran ghettos and various kinds of camps, and we all have images in our minds of what those places were like. However, the true scope of the system and the variety of sites and prisoners' experiences lie outside most people's understanding. To bridge that gap, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum has been compiling a multi-volume Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933-1945. Dr. Geoffrey Megargee, the Project Director, will discuss the camp universe and its broader significance for our understanding of Nazi Germany and the Holocaust.

Geoffrey Megargee is the Senior Applied Research Scholar in the Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, where he has served as project director and editor-in-chief for the Museum’s seven-volume Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933-1945 since 2000. The first volume of that work appeared in June 2009 and received a National Jewish Book Award and a Judaica Reference Award, among other distinctions. Dr. Megargee received his doctorate in military history in 1998 from the Ohio State University. He is the recipient of, among other honors, a J. William Fulbright grant for research in Germany, upon which he based his book Inside Hitler's High Command (winner of the Society for Military History’s 2001 Distinguished Book Award). He is also the author of War of Annihilation: Combat and Genocide on the Eastern Front, 1941, and a contributor to the West Point History of Warfare. Dr. Megargee is a member of the Department of the Army Historical Advisory Subcommittee and Treasurer of the United States Commission on Military History, and he has served as a Trustee for the Society for Military History and a Presidential Counselor for the National World War II Museum in New Orleans. He lectures frequently on the German army in World War II and the Holocaust.

Admission

Admission is free but booking is essential as space is limited. To reserve your ticket please visit our website

Website

http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/Whats-On?item=258

Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Online Learning Materials

http://www.wienerlibrary.co.uk/wls.aspx

A selection of the Wiener Library's unique stories and materials are now remotely accessible to anyone who wishes to learn more about the Holocaust and the Nazi era. The site allows users to trace different topics interactively, as well as providing background information on connected themes. The materials currently include detailed information on 'Childhood under the Swastika', 'Helping the Survivors' and the fascinating story of German-Jewish factory owner Ludwig Neumann.

Creator

  • The Wiener Library

How to obtain

The Wiener Library Learning Materials are freely accessible to everyone via the Wiener Library website.

Getting there

By tube:
•Russell Square (Piccadilly line)
•Goodge Street (Northern line)
•St Pancras International (Metropolitan, Northern, Circle, Victoria and Hammersmith & City lines)

By bus:
The following buses stop nearby:
7, 59, 68, X68, 91, 168, 188

Access:
We have recently moved to new premises in a historic location on Russell Square. At this time, access for some disabled people is limited and we encourage visitors to contact us in advance if they are concerned about access.
•The ground floor exhibition area is accessible only by a flight of five steps. We will be installing step-free access in Spring 2012. Once inside the building, all areas are accessible to wheelchairs via the lift.
•There are adapted toilets on the basement level.
•The nearest step-free underground station is King’s Cross, St Pancras.

The Wiener Library
29 Russell Square
London
Greater London
WC1B 5DP
England

Website

www.wienerlibrary.co.uk

E-mail

info@wienerlibrary.co.uk

Telephone

020 7636 7247

Fax

020 7436 6428

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.
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