donderdag 13 maart 2003
Deutsches Filmmuseum / Fritz Bauer Institut Frankfurt am Main
This lecture is an introduction to the Internet edition of the database of the "Cinematography of the Holocaust", a project of the Fritz Bauer Institute. The widespread dissemination of picture-storing media means that visual sources are assuming an ever greater social significance. A precarious situation has already arisen in the field of contemporary history, in particular, because the humanities have so far given priority to written documents. As a result, a considerable amount of catching up has to be done as regards cinematographic sources and their importance both for the historical process itself, and for the formation of a consciousness of history. Compared to written sources, pictorial sources offer significant educational advantages due to their apparently authentic character. For the same reason, however, they also harbour risks and problems which demand that research in the fields of the reception theory and source criticism devote more attention to them.
If the Holocaust is spoken of here as a focus, what is meant by this term is not a limitation of the scope of the documentation, but a thematic and interpretative point of reference in the face of the abundance of relevant material. It indicates that in addition to the anti-Semitic annihilation policy against the European Jews other groups too, were affected by the National Socialist mass crimes. Therefore the genocide perpetrated against the Sinti and Roma, the enslavement of "Slav peoples", the National Socialist murder of the sick, as well as the exploitation of slave labourers are to be included in the documentation.
The term Holocaust also refers to the fact that any reconstruction of the events must recognize and describe the opposing perspectives in the film documents, in front of and behind the camera, of perpetrators, victims and liberators. The lecture will include the presentation of some short films.
was born in Tel Aviv, Israel on April 10, 1946. He studied Sociology and works for the Deutsches Filmmuseum in Frankfurt/Main. He is Project Manager of "Cinematography of the Holocaust" in cooperation with the Fritz Bauer Institute. He was curating in the 1987 exhibition "From Babelsberg to Hollywood. Film Emigration out of Nazi Germany". He has written publications on "Film in Exile" and "Yiddish Cinema". In 1983 he directed and scripted with Hans Peter Kochenrath and Walter Schobert The Yiddish Cinema, in 1992 with Inge Classen Once Upon A Time In Yiddishland. In 1995 he shared direction and script creation of Auschwitz - Five Days In November with Cilly Kugelmann and Hanno Loewy. In 1996 he directed with Alexander Bohr Willi Münzenberg Or The Art Of Propaganda. Ronny Loewy is co-publisher of the magazine "Filmexil". He lives in Frankfurt am Main.