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To celebrate the conference of the International Feuchtwanger Society coming to London in 2024, the Leo Baeck Institute London has organised a Feuchtwanger Book Club, focusing on the work of the acclaimed – but now somewhat forgotten – German Jewish novelist Lion Feuchtwanger. 

Our Feuchtwanger Book Club is starting a new book in next week’s session: Lion Feuchtwanger’s 1932 novel ‘The War of the Jews’ (Der jüdische Krieg). It is open to everyone. 

Join us online on Zoom every Wednesday at 4pm (BST). For details contact j.cronin@leobaeck.co.uk

Prof. Dani Kranz

Germany is home to Europe’s third largest Jewish community. Yet surprisingly little is known about them. After the Shoah, about 15,000 German Jews returned to Germany or emerged from hiding. The growth of the Jewish population in Germany after 1945 was due entirely to immigration, which is somewhat counter intuitive. Who are the Jews who live in contemporary Germany? How do they live out their Jewishness? What Jewish cultures did they bring with them, and what kind of Jewish culture is forming in Germany?

Prof Dan Stone

The writings of Dutch Auschwitz survivors Eddy de Wind, Elie Cohen and Louis Micheels merit analysis not only because they anticipated what later became known as PTSD and much of the underpinnings of trauma theory. They also advocated a theory of survival that offers a compelling contrast to well-known “self-help” theories put forward by Bruno Bettelheim and, especially, Viktor Frankl. This lecture traces the ways in which this theory of survival challenged these simplistic narratives, explains how their work informed the changing field of psychiatry after the war, and considers its…

  ‘From Weimar to Hope – the Feuchtwangers in the Interwar Period.’

We are happy to inform you that the eleventh biennial meeting of the International Feuchtwanger Society (IFS) will take place September 12-14, 2024, in London, United Kingdom.

The conference is jointly organized by the Leo Baeck Institute London, the Research Centre for German & Austrian Exile Studies, University of London, and the International Feuchtwanger Society.

The conference centers around the idea of Britain, the British Commonwealth, and the British Mandate of Palestine as hub and transit…

Prof. Kay Schiller

As a gay high-performance runner, antifascist intellectual and sportswriter, Alex Natan was a quintessential outsider in Weimar Berlin. His marginal status also remained a constant during his forced emigration to Britain, as a precarious refugee in pre-war London, as a long-time internee during World War II, as well as a schoolteacher in the Midlands and author and journalist in post-war Britain and West Germany. This lecture will demonstrate how an unusual German Jew was affected by the ‘age of extremes’, making his life story quite typical of the predicaments of the 20th century.

Grzegorz Kwiatkowski

The ability to accurately describe the past is not confined to historians alone. Artists use their creative expression to explore the cruelties of history, aiming to shape a more ethical present and future. In the case of Grzegorz Kwiatkowski, art is also mixed with activism and active efforts to preserve the memory of the victims and their cultural heritage. Kwiatkowski, whose grandfather was a prisoner of the Stutthof concentration camp, and whose wife’s Jewish family hid during the war in a forest near Rzeszów, has been leading an artistic and activist battle to fight antisemitism,…