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Exhibition: Facing History: Portraits from the LBI Art Collection

Artist unknown. Unidentified mother and daughter. Germany, mid-19th century.These portraits of a mother and daughter show the cultural dynamics in a German-Jewish family of the mid-19th century. The mother’s dress adheres to traditional conventions of modesty, including a bonnet and possibly a Sheitel to cover her hair, while the daughter confidently wears her natural hair in ringlets and sports a low-cut dress that emphasizes her décolletage and jewelry.

At the core of LBI’s Art Collection are well over 1,000 portraits of Jews from Central Europe that reflect the changing cultural dynamics from the 18th century to the 20th century.

Library: Sparrow Makes her Way

Samson, Meta and L. Szkolny (illus). Spatz macht sich. Berlin: Jüdischer Buchverlag, 1938.

“Wishing that you may make your own way just like this ‘sparrow.’ Love, Evi, your Aunt Becker. Cologne, Rosh Hashanah 5699,” reads the inscription in this slender volume. The sparrow (in German, “Spatz”) in the inscription refers to the title character of the book, Spatz Macht Sich (Sparrow Makes her Way). This children’s novel by…

Research Profile: Michaela Raggam- Blesch on “Half-Jews” in Vienna, 1938–1945

Kurt Kelman and Gusti Dressler pose in front of a sign reading “Juden verboten!”
(Jews forbidden), at the Augarten Park in Vienna. Summer 1938.
Kurt Kelman Collection, AR 11292

Michaela Raggam-Blesch When I was conducting oral history interviews for the project “Topography of the Shoah in Vienna” in 2010, I met a number of interview partners who had survived the entire war in Vienna as so-called “half-Jews.” Though they ultimately escaped the Nazi genocide, they had lived in the most precarious circumstances in wartime…

Art: Lotka Burešová and her Terezín Friends

"Calm and prudence—breathe deeply!" reads the Czech inscription on
this drawing by Lotka Burešová. Franz Feigl Collection AR 5269

Anna Hájková, a scholar of the Theresienstadt Ghetto, describes how the discovery of a small watercolor painted there in 1944 led to insights into the cultural dynamics of the ghetto’s transnational enforced community.

Database of German Exile Publishers Now Online

Some of the distinctive logos of German exile publishers : Row 1 (l-r) Europäischer  Merkur, Paris; El Libro Libre, Mexico City; Humanitas, Zürich; Tarshish, Jerusalem;  Row 2 (l-r) Eugen Prager, Prague/Bratislava; Alliance Book Corporation, New York;  Malik, Prague/London; Pantheon, New York; Row 3 (l-r) Querido, Amsterdam/ Jakarta; Aurora Verlag, New York; Bermann-Fischer, Vienna/Stockholm; Bruno  Cassirer, Oxford.

LBI Library and Archives staff have built an online database of publishing houses founded by German-speaking refugees outside the German Reich and occupied Europe between 1933 and 1945. The new portal gives LBI’s substantial collection of Exilliteratur a higher profile and aids in the discovery of a body of work that is not otherwise linked…