Creating Cosmopolitan Past: Local and Transitional Influences in Memory Work in Schindler’s Factory in Kraków, Poland

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The present article tests the limits of cosmopolitan memory. It spotlights a unique case study, the permanent exhibition in Schindler’s Factory in Kraków, Poland, shaped by a group of local curators and politicians, as well as representatives of foreign memorial institutions and supranational NGOs. The thrust to create a cosmopolitan narrative came from Polish curators, but their vision was curbed by both a local politician and the head of a global NGO. The version of cosmopolitanism offered in Kraków engaged with contemporary Polish problems. However, it ignored Polish anti-Semitism and perpetration. The article reveals how in practice the cosmopolitan message is shaped, what propels it forward, what limits its horizons.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-68
JournalHistory and Memory
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Mar 2020



  • Holocaust memory
  • cosmopolitan memory
  • museums
  • Kraków
  • Poland

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