Auschwitz Foundation - Conference by Professor Peter Kuon on: “The Salzburg University KZ-memoria scripta Interdisciplinary Research Group Project”: March 9, 2012

In the context of the Auschwitz Foundation’s Cycle of Conferences and Debates, Remembrance of  Auschwitz and the Auschwitz Foundation have invited Professor Peter Kuon (Salzburg University) on Friday March 9, 2012 at 17h00 at the Albertine (Bibliothèque royale de Belgique - Royal Library of Belgium).



The Salzburg University KZ-memoria scripta project: archives – approaches – methods


“There are many accounts by survivors. And they are strikingly monotonous”. This judgment by Hannah Arendt poses a problem because it sends the survivors back to the anonymity from which they wished to emerge through their writing. Freeing ordinary testimony, i.e. testimony which is not specifically literary, from the reproach of monotony entails reading it less for the historical facts it contains than for the experiences it describes. In his conference Professor Kuon will illustrate his “polyphonic” mode of reading this testimony by applying it to thirteen survivors who all describe their arrival at the camp of Mauthausen on April 8, 1944, but in very different ways. He will then present the Salzburg University KZ-memoria scripta project, its aims, methods and results.




The Salzburg University KZ-memoria scripta Interdisciplinary Research Group, which results from an Austrian Wissenschaftsfonds (Fund for the Promotion of Academic Research) project on Mauthausen, is devoted to the systematic investigation and general dissemination of both published and unpublished testimonies written by survivors of the National Socialist concentration and extermination camps. This study is based on the Mauthausen Archives, which contain approximately 200 texts (altogether between 20,000 and 30,000 pages in several languages: German, Italian, French and Spanish. This archive is the only one of its kind on writings by former camp prisoners and will be completed in the future by testimony on imprisonment in other concentration and extermination camps and in other languages, notably the Slavic languages.


Presented and chaired by Philippe Mesnard



Practical details:

Friday March 9, 2012 from 17h00 to 19h00 at the Albertine (Bibliothèque royale de Belgique)

Entrance: Boulevard de l’Empereur, 4 – 1000 Brussels

The conference is free of charge, but registration is necessary



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Information and registration: contact Remembrance of Auschwitz – Frédéric Crahay

Tel.: +32 (0)2 512 79 98 – Fax: +32 (0)2 512 58 84 – Contact by e-mail


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