International Academic Conference "Aktion Reinhardt: Historical Contexts, Research Perspectives, and Memory


Do. 09.06.2022 | 09:00 -
Sa. 11.06.2022 | 18:00 Uhr
Dr. Łukasz Krzyżanowski
Christhardt Henschel

On the 80th anniversary of the Operation Reinhard, the Jerzy Kłoczowski East Central Europe Institute, the Grodzka Gate–NN Theatre Centre in Lublin, the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies (Yale University) and the German Historical Institute in Warsaw organize a conference discussing the various stages of the extermination of Jews in different parts of the General Government.

We would like to discuss the indirect extermination in ghettos, the functioning of labor camps for Jews, the preparations for and course of the Operation Reinhard in various districts (including deportation actions in selected ghettos), death camps in Bełżec, Sobibór and Treblinka, and finally the third stage of the extermination from three perspectives: perpetrators, victims and bystanders. Politics and education about the Holocaust will also be discussed.

Our goal is to present the most recent research and to outline the directions and perspectives of further academic inquiries. An important element of the conference will be the debates and discussions among researchers regarding the studies presented. A special moment of the conference will be the Lelewel Debate.


9.00 Opening remarks

9.30 - 11.20 Perpetrators (chair: Lukasz Krzyzanowski)

Edward Westermann, The Intoxication of Violence: Performative Masculinity, Social Camaraderie, and Aggression

Markus Roth, The German County Chiefs in the Generalgouvernement and their Role in the Holocaust

Andrzej Żbikowski, Jürgen Stroop and the Final Liquidation of the Warsaw Ghetto

Robert Parzer, A New Perspective on the Entangled History of the Shoa and Nazi-”Euthanasia”: Transfers of Perpetratorship between Occupied Poland and the Altreich

11.20-11.50 Coffee break 

11.50-13.20 Victims (chair: Marek Radziwon)

Christhardt Henschel, Persecution of Jews in the Regierungsbezirk Zichenau and the „Aktion Reinhardt”

Katarzyna Person, Jews Helping Other Jews in General Government: The Case of Warsaw Ghetto

Natalia Aleksiun, Underground Lives: Jews in Hiding in Eastern Galicia 

15.30-17.00 Bystanders (chair: Christhardt Henschel)

Michał Kowalski, Attitudes of Polish Witnesses towards Liquidation Actions during the Reinhardt Operation. The Case of the Sokołów District

Martyna Grądzka-Rejak, Persecution for Providing Help to Jews During and After the Operation Reinhardt

Adam Puławski, Polish Government-in-exile and the Polish Underground State Facing the Holocaust

17.00-17.30 Coffee break

17.30-19.30 Historiography; discussions & controversies (chair: Gieorgij Kasjanow)

Jan Grabowski, Jan Tomasz Gross, Andreas Lawaty, Natalia Aleksiun


9.30-11.20 Collaborators (chair: Mirosław Filipowicz)

Tomasz Frydel, The Polish Blue Police and the Holocaust: Ordinary Men, Extraordinary State Violence 

Peter Black, What Happened to the Trawniki Men?: Patterns of Existence After Trawniki

John-Paul Himka, Local Police in Distrikt Galizien and in Volhynia within the Reichskommissariat Ukraine: Their Role in the Holocaust

Grzegorz Rossoliński-Liebe, Polish Mayors and the Holocaust in the General Government

11.20-11.40 Coffee break

11.40-13.20 Methodology (chair: Winson Chu)

Annika Wienert, Towards Transdisciplinary Holocaust Research: Spacial Thinking as recherche croisée

Zofia Wóycicka, Between Documentation and Inscenisation. Presenting the Holocaust in Contemporary Polish Museums 

Marcin Urbanek, New Museum and Memorial Site in the Former Extermination Camp in Sobibór as a Protective Space

13.20-13.40 Coffee break

13.40-15.40 Education (chair: Roman Romantsov)

Piotr Trojański, Education about the Holocaust in Poland in a Historical Perspective

Jolanta Laskowska, Holocaust in Educational Activities at the State Museum at Majdanek

Stephen Naron, Reflections of Aktion Reinhardt in the Testimonies at the Fortunoff Video Archive

Monika Tarajko, Last/Lost traces. Symbols and Stories in Memory Work 

17.30-20.00 Lelewel Debate (Event in English with simultaneous Polish translation)

30 Years after 'Ordinary Men': Groundbreaking and New Perspectives in Holocaust Research

Welcome by the organizers

Online address by Christopher Browning (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, emeritus) 


Mark Roseman (Indiana University, Bloomington), Roma Sendyka (Jagiellonian University, Krakow),  Michał Bilewicz (University of Warsaw), Łukasz Krzyżanowski (German Historical Institute, chair)



Tour of Holocaust memorial sites

The conference will be broadcast on the Internet and recorded on video. 

Conference is designed to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the beginning of “Operation Reinhard”.


Roman Smolorz (Universität Regensburg): Rechnungshof des Generalgouvernements in Krakau
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