The Community Security Trust (CST) Antisemitic Incidents Report 2021, published in February 2022, shows 2,255 anti-Jewish hate incidents reported nationwide in 2021. This is the highest annual total that CST has ever recorded and is 34% increase from 2020.
Antisemitism continues to pose a very real threat to Jews in Britain, Europe and around the world.
The Wiener Holocaust Library’s new exhibition has been curated partly in response to worrying trends in contemporary antisemitism, including the rise in harassment of Jews in recent years, and the spread of conspiracy theories online during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This exhibition reveals the history of the fight against antisemitism over the last century in France, Britain and Germany. Through unique and never seen before documents from the Library’s collections, and striking photographs from CST’s archives, we spotlight the stories of the individuals, organisations and campaigns that have fought against antisemitism since the time of the Dreyfus Affair in 1890s France. The arrest, trial and imprisonment of Jewish French army officer Alfred Dreyfus on false charges of espionage became a sensation in France and across Europe and galvanised both antisemites and their opponents.
The exhibition shines a light on the various strategies that those fighting against antisemitism have taken over the last one hundred years and more, from publishing pamphlets refuting antisemitic ideas, to gathering evidence about the activities of antisemites, to street fighting and the infiltration of fascist groups.
This work continues today.
The Library seeks to help educate visitors on the complex history of antisemitism, and to be inspired by the rich history of anti-antisemites. By learning from the past, we can better recognise instances of antisemitism and challenge it where it is found.
**This exhibition has been extended until the 18th September 2022.
Exhibition curator, Dr Barbara Warnock, and Director of The Wiener Holocaust Library, Dr Toby Simpson, discuss the relevance and importance of our new exhibition.
- Exhibition talk: Conspiracy and Antisemitism: combatting the Protocols of the Elders of Zion 100 years ago and why this remains significant today, Tuesday 7 July, 6:30-8pm
- Exhibition talk: Joe Mulhall: The Rise of the Today’s Far Right, Wednesday 20 July, 6:30-8pm
- Panel Discussion: Antisemitism Today, Tuesday 26 July, 6:30-8pm
- Antisemitism on Social Media, Thursday 28 July, 6:30-7:30pm
- Film Screening – Proof of Identity, Wednesday 3rd August 6:30-8pm
- Curator’s Talk with Dr Barbara Warnock: Fighting Antisemitism from Dreyfus to Today, Thursday 11 August, 1-2pm
- Book launch: Anti-Antisemitism: Countering Anti-Jewish Racism in Western Europe, 1890-2022, Wednesday 14th August 6:30pm
Watch Past Events
Virtual Exhibition Talk: Fighting AntisemitismUsing rare artefacts from the Library’s collections, Dr Warnock explores the development of antisemitism in western Europe from the late nineteenth century to today, highlighting the means by which Jewish organisations and other groups have fought back against antisemitism.
Virtual Panel Discussion on Holocaust distortion
In this event, panelists discussed some of the issues around Holocaust distortion, including considering how Holocaust distortion should be defined; how, when and where ideas of Holocaust distortion have developed; how Holocaust distortion differs (or not) from Holocaust denial, and what threat Holocaust distortion poses to public discourses.
Exhibition Talk: The 43 Group and their fight against Fascists
In this event, Daniel Sonabend, historian and author of We Fight Fascists: The 43 Group and their Forgotten Battle for Post-War Britain, tells the story of the militant Jewish anti-fascist organisation the 43 Group. The 43 Group was the first organization of its kind in Britain and theirs is a fascinating story full of character, drama, and indomitable spirit, which Sonabend brings to life in his talk using photographs and interview footage of veterans of the Group.
We have been delighted to receive the following press coverage for this exhibition:
- Al Jazeera – Learning from the past to effectively fight anti-Semitism today (11.03.22)
- Londonist – The Fight Against Antisemitism Goes On – As This New Exhibition Shows (28.03.22)
- London Live – New exhibition at The Wiener Holocaust Library (29.03.22)
- BBC News – Exhibition looking at history of fight against anti-Semitism opens (30.03.22)
- The Jewish Chronicle – Same battle, changing foes (31.03.22)
- Evening Standard – Londoner’s Diary: Britain ‘must beware of rising anti-Semitism’ (31.03.22)
- Jewish Renaissance – Fighting Antisemitism from Dreyfus to Today (April)
- The Times of Israel – London exhibit charts 150 years of Europe’s antisemitism – and the fight against it (28.04.22)
- Jewish News – Fighting Talk (05.05.22)