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Violeta Davoliūtė

Senior Fellow (10/2022 – 02/2023)


The Holocaust Perpetrator in Local Memory. Case Studies from Lithuania in European Perspective


Violeta DavoliūtėThe outbreak of communal violence against Jews, catalysed by the German invasion of the USSR, has long been neglected by scholars. Recent research based on the testimonies of Jewish survivors and on previously inaccessible Soviet archives have partially remedied this problem. Less well known is the memory of non-Jewish eyewitnesses and their perspective on the local, non-German perpetrators. This project uses under-researched collections of audio-visual testimonies of non-Jewish witnesses of non-German participation in the Holocaust. It examines how local memory of perpetration has evolved from the time of the events in question to the present day, against the backdrop of changing memory regimes from the Soviet to the post-Soviet period. These testimonies depart from the collective memory of the Second World War as a time of Soviet victory or national victimisation and are key to understanding the motivation and role of these perpetrators at the local level.


Violeta Davoliūtė, Professor at the Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Vilnius University, Senior Researcher at the Lithuanian Institute of History and the Lithuanian Culture Research Institute, and Project Leader of Facing the Past: Public History for a Stronger Europe (Horizon Europe, 2022-2025). A graduate of Vilnius University, she completed her M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Toronto. A specialist in cultural memory and social trauma, she has published extensively on these topics with a focus on the Baltic States and East-Central Europe. In recent years she has been a visiting scholar at Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena, Yale University, EHESS, and Upsalla University.


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The Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies (VWI) is funded by:


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