This event is co-organised with UCL's Department of Hebrew and Jewish Studies
with Professor Jeff Veidlinger and
Professor François Guesnet
Tuesday, 29 March 2022 18:00 – 19:00 GMT
Between 1918 and 1921, over a hundred thousand Jews were murdered in Ukraine and Poland by peasants, townsmen, and soldiers who blamed the Jews for the turmoil of the Russian Revolution. In hundreds of separate incidents, ordinary people robbed their Jewish neighbors with impunity, burned down their houses, ripped apart their Torah scrolls, sexually assaulted them, and killed them. Largely forgotten today, these pogroms – ethnic riots – dominated headlines and international affairs in their time. Aid workers warned that six million Jews were in danger of complete extermination. Twenty years later, these dire predictions would come true. Drawing upon long-neglected archival materials, including thousands of newly discovered witness testimonies, trial records, and official orders, acclaimed historian Jeffrey Veidlinger shows for the first time how this wave of genocidal violence created the conditions for the Holocaust.
Through stories of survivors, perpetrators, aid workers, and governmental officials, he explains how so many different groups of people came to the same conclusion: that killing Jews was an acceptable response to their various problems.
Jeff Veidlinger is Professor of History and Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan. His books The Moscow State Yiddish Theater and In the Shadow of the Shtetl have been awarded numerous book awards.
François Guesnet is Professor of Modern Jewish History at University College London. He specializes in Eastern European Jewish History and is co-chair of the editorial board of Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry. His book publications include Polnische Juden im 19. Jahrhundert (Vienna, Cologne, 1998), and, as editor, Warsaw. The Jewish Metropolis (2015, paperback 2017). A collected volume Sources on Jewish Self-Government in the Polish Lands from Its Inception to the Present is forthcoming (Boston, Leiden: 2022).
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