"The Jewish Topic" in Contemporary Lviv
Dr. Vasyl RasevychKrypyakevych Institute of Ukrainian Studies
July 8, 2011 / 4.15 pm
Center for Urban History, Lviv
The Jewish History and Culture of East-Central Europe summer school hosted a lecture by Dr. Vasyl Rasevych.
The catastrophe of World War II, the destruction of Halychyna’s Jews, and the soviet policy of silence led to Jews, the second largest ethnic group, being forgotten for a long time in Lviv. The Jewish issue was carefully avoided, and victims of the Holocaust were identified as generic soviet citizens killed by the Nazis. From time to time this was done for propaganda, but it never became an integral part of the collective memory of the city’s new inhabitants. The lecture discusses new "discoveries" made by contemporary Lviv residents regarding the Jewish issue. It explores various attempts at squeezing out an alien past by writing ethno centrist history. Various ideological constructions are also explored which use the Jewish issue to politically mobilize various public historical debates. Finally, it analyzes attempts of streamlining Jewish historical legacy, the commemorative policy of the city and the commercial exploitation of Jewish Cultural-Historical past.