‘I will show you the space right away’: Landscapes of the Shoah, Performances of Memory Cover Image
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„Przestrzeń zaraz pokażę”. Krajobrazy Zagłady, performanse pamięci
‘I will show you the space right away’: Landscapes of the Shoah, Performances of Memory

Author(s): Aleksandra Szczepan
Subject(s): Social Philosophy, Fascism, Nazism and WW II, History of the Holocaust, Philosophy of History
Published by: Instytut Badań Literackich Polskiej Akademii Nauk
Keywords: video testimony; Holocaust; landscape; indexicality; witness; bystander; gesture;

Summary/Abstract: Szczepan examines the performative practices of Holocaust bystanders in relation to sites of genocide that remain unmarked and unremembered. The study draws on theories of witnessing and of the relationship between trauma and space or landscape. Beginning with an analysis of the interdependence between the gesture, the landscape and testimony in bystanders’ accounts in Claude Lanzmann’s Shoah, Szczepan presents the emergence of the video testimony as a genre as well as possible ways of interpreting it. Finally, she examines performative practices of the bystanders to the decentralised Shoah, using as examples video testimonies from the archives of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and the Yahad - In Unum foundation. Szczepan argues that in the case of the testimonial practices of casual witnesses of the Holocaust, the spatial-performative dimension becomes especially significant. It urges us to re-examine the problem of indexicality of a testimony and conventions determining this genre.

  • Issue Year: 2018
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 297-320
  • Page Count: 24
  • Language: Polish