Exile, Memory, and Irony
Our conclusion places the Salzmanns’ post-emigration lives in the context of wider debates around Jewish exile and modern migration. As we have argued, photography and writing proved powerful tools for the Salzmanns to reject ‘fixed’ or singular identity politics in favour of a performative situatedness. Such sources might still obscure as much as they illuminate. To what degree should their subsequent lives and deaths change our perception of sources produced amid persecution? The Salzmann archive suggests that, in both Germany and America, the use of irony was pivotal to negotiating the gap between what was experienced and what was known, at once valorising and calling into question the validity of individual attempts to forge meaning against the backdrop of a historical reality that defied comprehension.