Haunted Dreams: The Legacy of the Holocaust in And Europe Will Be Stunned
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Between 2007 and 2011, the Israeli artist Yael Bartana, living in Poland, made a 3-part series of video installations titled, And Europe Will Be Stunned. The series chronicles a fictional Polish political movement called the Jewish Renaissance Movement in Poland (JRMiP), the arrival of a group of Israeli Jewish pioneers who build a kibbutz in central Warsaw, and the assassination and funeral of the JRMiP’s leader. This chapter demonstrates that Bartana’s work does not simply seek to create a backward-looking utopia, but rather, mobilizes Holocaust memory through image and association, to reflect on Zionism and post-Holocaust Israeli history. Combining images of Zionist pioneers and tropes of Zionist filmography with reminders of the legacy of the Holocaust, Bartana interrogates the instrumentalization of the Holocaust in Israeli history and culture and exposes the discontinuity between Jewish victimization in Europe and Jewish domination in Israel.
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