The history of the Holocaust and the politics of remembrance

On 31 January – 5 February 2021, Sefer Center will hold a Winter school on Jewish studies (in Zoom format), in cooperation with the International Center for University Teaching of Jewish Civilization, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Center for Slavic-Jewish studies the Institute of Slavic studies, supported by the Genesis Philanthropy Group, the Charity Foundation of Vladimir Potanin and the Claims Conference.

The School program includes 3 main mini-courses (consisting of 4 lectures):

The Holocaust on the territory of the USSR: sources, features, memory


Ilya Altman, PhD., professor of the Russian State University for the Humanities (RSUH), Head of the master's program" The politics of memory: the history of the holocaust and genocides» of the faculty of International Relations of RSUH

In the year of the 80th anniversary of the beginning of the Great Patriotic War and the total extermination of the Jews of Europe, as well as the 75th anniversary of the verdict of the International Nuremberg Tribunal, the question of civilian casualties in the occupied territory of the USSR has become particularly acute in Russia. Recently, the term "genocide of the Soviet people" has been legally enshrined in the Russian Federation. Were Jews excluded from the "peaceful Soviet citizens"? How to identify, organize and analyze documents about the Holocaust? What secrets do Russian and foreign archives still hide? Refugees and their rescuers. Features of the Holocaust in the occupied territory of the USSR in comparison with other countries and categories of victims of Nazism. How has the policy of Holocaust remembrance changed in modern Russia?

These are the issues that will be addressed in the proposed mini-course.


The Holocaust, the Soviet politics of memory and the Jews


Dr. Arkady Zeltser, Director of the Moshe Mirilashvili Center for the Study of the History of the Holocaust in the Soviet Union, Yad Vashem, Jerusalem

The course will examine the Soviet policy of war remembrance and its impact on attitudes to the Holocaust in the war and post-war years. The course's lectures will examine the reaction of Soviet Jews to the traumatic events of the Holocaust, its impact on Jewish self-identification, and the problems of Jewish memorial initiatives. In addition, the issue of the use of Soviet ideological concepts by the creative intelligentsia for the implementation of their own alternative tasks will be analyzed.


The Holocaust: A Jewish and Non-Jewish Perspective

феферман по грудь.jpg

Dr. Kirill Feferman, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Jewish History, Director, Center for Holocaust Studies, Ariel University, Israel

The course will cover some general issues of the history of the Holocaust in the context of European and Jewish history.


The school will also include plenary lectures, round tables and discussions, a cultural program and a quest.

Students, postgraduates and young teachers (up to 45 years old) whose interests include Jewish history and culture, and the history of the Holocaust are invited to participate in the winter school.

Applications for participation in the school (online questionnaire in Russian) are accepted until January 14, 2021.

Notifications about the results of the competitive selection for the winter school will be sent out until January 20, 2021.

See you at school!

Anna Shaevich, program director

Irina Kopchenova, coordinator of educational programs