© Bernhard Kummer

Gabriele Anderl, PhD (Dr. phil.)

Freelance scholar, author and journalist in Vienna

Gabriele Anderl, PhD (Dr. phil.). Freelance scholar, author and journalist in Vienna, specialized in the history of the Shoa, flight, rescue attempts and exile from the 1930s to the present as well as Nazi looted art and provenance research. Numerous publications on these topics. Former research associate of the Austrian historian commission. Member of the Austrian Commission of provenance research and member of the board of the Austrian Society for Exile Research. Currently working on a comprehensive book on art trade in Vienna during the years 1938 – 1945. Leon Zelman Prize for Dialogue and Understanding (2016).


Flight and Exile in the Culture of Remembrance (together with Anne Klein)

During the Nazi period victims of political and racist persecution tried to save their lives by seeking refuge in neighboring or overseas countries. At least since the Evian Conference in July 1938 it became obvious that the world state community was not willing to find a humanitarian answer to the so-called “refugee-problem”. Even liberal democracies established a closed-border policy. In consideration of the actual debate on asylum and immigration in the European Union we want to discuss – from an Austrian and German perspective – discursive links to this past. We will consider the question whether it is legitimate to interrelate the mentioned historical developments with current events – for example when teaching “learning from history” as part of Holocaust-education. Critics of this approach argue, for example, that Antisemitism cannot be put on the same level with xenophobia or Islamophobia and that the National Socialist regime may not be compared with present terror regimes. Despite this justified criticism we want to argue that it is our civic duty to learn from history -- especially in a time when solidarity with refugees and spontaneous or organized support for persecuted people are depreciated and even become liable to prosecution. Representations of refugees as “the others” of the Western world, as pushed by right wing populist movements, take up racist stereotyping from the colonial and the Nazi periods. The problem is, that when humanitarian values as fundamental pillars of western civic societies are gradually abandoned, not only solidarity, but democracy is put at stake.

Programme: Panel 10, Friday, 7 September 2018, 13:00-14:30 (Gabriele Anderl has cancelled shortly, therefore Anne Klein will give the presentation alone.)