85. szám // 2021. Globalizációtörténeti megközelítések


Megjelent: 2021.11.19

Kékesi Zoltán – Zombory Máté

Magyar történeti kiállítások Oświęcimben és Párizsban 1965-ben

Antifascist Memory Revised: Hungarian Historical Exhibitions in Oświęcim and Paris, 1965

DOI: 10.52656/KORALL.2021.03.007


This article challenges the widely accepted thesis that the antifascist memory of the Second World War suppressed Holocaust commemoration. Instead of exploring the exceptions to this rule by looking for single cases representing some aspects of the Holocaust, the authors argue that antifascist memory presents a distinct cultural regime for remembering the past. They claim that antifascist memory, understood as a particular historical phenomenon on a European scale, opened specific ways to commemorate the Jewish genocide.
The paper relies on two pillars: first, on recent memory studies scholarship that challenged “the myth of silence” in relation to the postwar decades and turned recently to the 1950s and 1960s; second, on recent studies revisiting antifascism itself, demonstrating its transnational and ideologically diverse nature. A contested but until the 1970s still commonly held pan-European antifascist legacy of the Second World War fostered not only intra-Eastern bloc collaboration but also cross-Cold War cooperation with respect to the memory of the Second World War The authors present an empirical comparative study that discusses the 1965 Hungarian pavilion at the Auschwitz State Museum and the Hungarian section at the permanent exhibition at the Museum of the Memorial of the Unknown Jewish Martyr in Paris which opened in the same year. Based on archival documents in Budapest, Oświęcim, and Paris, the paper argues that the antifascist framework of both exhibitions displayed a coherent, historically accurate, and comprehensive account of the genocide that unambiguously articulated the Jewish identity of those perished and persecuted.