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VWI invites/goes to...
Emily Gioielli: Cataclysm – Water and the Holocaust in Central Europe, 1933–1945

Mittwoch, 1. Juni 2022, 15:00 - 17:00

Vienna Wiesenthal Institute, Research Lounge, 1010 Vienna, Rabensteig 3, 3rd Floor


VWI invites Piera Rossetto 

BB“Cataclysm” is a socio-environmental history of the Holocaust in (East) Central Europe. Using water as the connecting thread, this study investigates how hybrid human-ecological processes shaped the practices, experiences, spaces and memories of violence and persecution of European Jews, and how, in turn mass death and persecution shaped the natural world. Using methods and questions from both environmental and social history, “Cataclysm” investigates four themes that were defined by the cooperation and sometimes tension between human initiative and natural processes in Central Europe: the construction of genocidal spaces; forced labor operations in camps and ghettos; mass killing operations; and resistance and adaptation to the environments of destruction produced by the National Socialist regime and their allies across central, eastern, and southeastern Europe.

Commented by Piera Rossetto

Emily Gioielli, VWI Research Fellow, is an Assistant Teaching Professor of History in the Humanities and Arts Department at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (Massachusetts). Her research focuses on the history of violence and regime change from a transdisciplinary perspective and the history of women, gender, and sexuality in twentieth-century East Central Europe. She holds a PhD from Central European University (Budapest), and her research has been supported by Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena, the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS), the Rockefeller Archive Center, and the Open Society Archives in Budapest.

Piera Rossetto holds a PhD in Jewish Studies from Ca' Foscari University of Venice and in Socio-historical anthropology from EHESS Toulouse. Between 2018 and 2022, she was Hertha Firnberg research fellow and lecturer at the Centre for Jewish Studies, University of Graz with a project on contemporary Jewish migrations from the Middle East and North Africa to Italy (1940s-1970s). Her main research interests includes Jewish communities from the MENA region, post-colonial migrations, research-creation practices.

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Cover illustration: The Liberation of Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp, April 1945

Click here to download the invitation as a PDF file.

In cooperation with:

 CJS UniGraz

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Das Wiener Wiesenthal Institut für Holocaust-Studien (VWI) wird gefördert von:


bmbwf 179


wienkultur 179


  BKA 179