David Shneer F'20

David  Shneer
Professor
History
University of Colorado Boulder

ACLS Fellowship Program 2020
Professor
History
University of Colorado Boulder
Art is My Weapon: Anti-Fascist Music, Yiddish Performance, and Holocaust Memory (1933-1989)

Art is My Weapon tells the story of one woman and her husband’s attempt to redeem post World War II Germany from its Nazi past with their Yiddish performance and socialist politics. In 1952, Lin Jaldati, a Dutch Jewish cabaret performer and Auschwitz survivor from Amsterdam, moved to East Berlin with Eberhard Rebling, a pianist, who had left Germany under Hitler for Holland where he survived the war. By singing anti-fascist Yiddish music, Jaldati and Rebling animated the memory of World War II and the Holocaust in their concerts. They commemorated murdered Jews in the very country that orchestrated their murder; their concert halls served as alternatives to Jewish religious spaces; and their message in these performances envisioned a peaceful future through the universalist lens of communism.