Institute for Contemporary History, Munich


Katarzyna Person (Poland), assistant professor, Jewish Historical Institute, Warsaw, “Polish-Jewish Relations in Germany in the Immediate Postwar Period”.

Katarzyna Person is a historian of Eastern European Jewish History working in the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw. After her PhD, awarded by the University of London in 2010, she held postdoctoral fellowships from the International Institute for Holocaust Research in Yad Vashem, the Center for Jewish History in New York City and La Fondation pour la Mémoire de la Shoah. She has written a number of articles on the Holocaust and its aftermath in occupied Europe, and edited three volumes of documents from the Underground Archive of the Warsaw Ghetto. A book, based on her PhD thesis, which deals with assimilated, acculturated and baptised Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto, was published by Syracuse University Press in 2014.

During her tenure at the Institut für Zeitgeschichte she worked on a project exploring relations between Polish and Jewish Displaced Persons in postwar Germany, focusing in particular on Bavaria. The aim was to explore what happens when the two groups meet in an unfamiliar, largely hostile environment and to what extent their relations were shaped both by the past and by the events happening at a time in postwar Poland. During her research she used the extensive archival collection of the Institute, looking for materials relating to both Polish and Jewish DP experience, as well as the collections of other archives in Munich. The result of her research will be a study contributing to understanding of both the mechanisms of anti-semitism and the history of Polish-Jewish relations.