Eastern European Displaced Persons, Refugees, and POWs during and after the Holocaust
Monday-Friday, 5 September–9 September 2022
The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM), the Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Latvia, and the Museum “Jews in Latvia” are pleased to invite applications for an international conference entitled, "Eastern European Displaced Persons, Refugees, and POWS during and after the Holocaust." The conference is scheduled for September 5–September 9, 2022 in Riga, Latvia.
The conference will focus on the experiences of POWs, Displaced Persons (DPs), and refugees hailing from Eastern Europe throughout the course of the Holocaust and in its aftermath. For POWS, topics include, but are not limited to studies of prisoners’ experiences in camps, Jewish and Roma POWs, survival strategies, filtration back to the Soviet Union after the war, escape to the West after the war, portrayals of POWs in literature and film, and memory studies of POW experiences. For DPs and refugees, topics include, but are not limited to, projects focusing on the dislocation of individuals from Eastern Europe during the Soviet Occupation resulting from the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, citizens who fled to the Soviet interior from the advancing German army, citizens made refugees during the war, people forcefully resettled for forced labor, citizens who fled the Red Army as it advanced westward, Jewish displaced persons made stateless after the war, and the experiences and considerations shaping the lives of individuals who found themselves in DP camps after the war, especially regarding their attempts to return home or flee to the West.
Applications will be accepted from scholars ranging from advanced doctoral candidates (aspirants) to full professors. Applications are welcome from scholars working in all relevant academic disciplines, including anthropology, archaeology, art history, geography, film studies, history, Jewish studies, law, literature, material culture, philosophy, political science, religion, sociology, and other fields.
Participants will be chosen by a Steering Committee consisting of representatives from the Mandel Center at the USHMM, the Arolsen Archives, the Moshe Mirilashvili Center for Research on the Holocaust in the Soviet Union at Yad Vashem, Yahad-In Unum, the Center for Genocides and Mass Atrocities Studies at Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, the Raphael Lemkin Center for Genocide Studies at Kherson State University, the Center for Judaic Studies and Contemporary Jewish Life at the University of Connecticut, the University of Latvia, and the Museum “Jews in Latvia.” Representatives from the Steering Committee will have the opportunity to network with participants and present information about their institutions.
Selected participants will be expected to submit a finalized paper (no more than 25 pages) a month prior to the beginning of the conference for circulation among all participants. Daily sessions will include five 45-minute presentations followed by a discussion (up to 45 min), as well as opportunities for participants to engage in excursions around the Riga area exploring themes discussed at the conference.
Please note that the organizers of this event intend to hold the conference on site in Riga at the University of Latvia. However, if it is impossible to physically convene from September 5-September 9 due to the Coronavirus pandemic, then the conference will be held either entirely online or in a hybrid in-person and online format. Details on the conference’s format will be sent out well in advance of the beginning of the program.
All application materials must be received by 1 May 2022. Incomplete applications will not be considered after this date. Late applications will not be accepted. The selected participants will be notified by 1 June 2022.
Please submit your applications as follows:
- Complete the application form at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfhhWkIO7IAgX9p3q_BAPJ0hjJAT2uUv_FNyQJnslIRqv4flw/viewform?usp=sf_link
- The application form includes a current Curriculum Vitae outlining the applicant’s qualifications (including research projects, presentations, and publications).
- The application form also includes an entry for your abstract of no more than 1000 words for your proposed paper (including title and discussion of methodological and theoretical issues, and brief bibliography/sources).
- (Doctoral candidates only) must submit a letter of recommendation addressing the applicant’s scholarly potential. To preserve the confidentiality of recommendation letters, faculty recommenders must email their signed letters (on institutional letterhead) directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The conference organizers are the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM), the Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Latvia, and the Museum “Jews in Latvia.”
The organizers will cover the cost of economy class flights to and from the conference, lodging for the conference’s duration and either a stipend for meals or actual meals. Participants must obtain their own health insurance.
The conference will be conducted in English.