The Holocaust Research Institute at Royal Holloway is one of the leading academic centres of its kind in Europe, internationally recognised for its research, teaching, public advocacy and creative work.
The Research Institute’s mission is to promote research into the Holocaust, its origins and aftermath, and to examine the extent to which genocide, war and dictatorship can be understood as defining elements in the history of the twentieth century. It is an international, interdisciplinary forum, bringing together researchers working on different aspects of the Holocaust in areas including history, literary and language studies, film and media studies, philosophy and sociology.
Our core staff and departmental associates include internationally recognised scholars Dan Stone, Simone Gigliotti, Robert Eaglestone, Barry Langford, Colin Davis, Andrea Mammone, Ahuvia Kahane and the late David Cesarani amongst others. In the last five years alone, our staff have published and edited over 40 books with major presses, in addition to contributing to academic journals, conferences and both national and international media.
National and international collaboration
Since 2007 we have run over 25 national and international conferences and our staff work regularly with the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, Yad Vashem, the Imperial War Museum, the Wiener Library, the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure and many other centres for the study of the Holocaust and genocide. Institute staff also present lectures and conference papers worldwide on a regular basis.
Enrichment and professional development
Academic research and discussion is at the very heart of the Institute; we organise a variety of events including termly research workshops, postgraduate seminars and conferences. We also run a biennial ten-day residential Summer Institute on the Holocaust and Jewish Civilisation, intended for faculty, researchers and practitioners working in Holocaust commemoration. This is supported by the Holocaust Educational Foundation of Northwestern University, USA, and Pears Foundation.
Impact on public affairs
In the past, members of the Institute have advised the German Chancellor’s office and the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office on Holocaust-era issues and combating anti-Semitism. Professor Dan Stone is Chair of the Holocaust Galleries Redesign Academic Advisory Group for the Imperial War Museum, part of the Experts Reference Group for the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, and also part of the University of London's bid for the Prime Minister's Commission Holocaust Learning Centre. Administrator Imogen Dalziel has been awarded for her voluntary services to the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum. Furthermore, we hold a long-standing relationship with organisations such as the Holocaust Educational Trust and the Institute of Education.
Impact on the media and creative sector
Our staff are frequently called upon to advise and contribute to the media, including the BBC, Channel 4, The Independent, The Guardian and The Jewish Chronicle. Barry Langford scripted the award-winning short film, Torte Bluma (2005); the late David Cesarani was Assistant Producer for the 2012 documentary Survivors of Treblinka. Dan Stone has recently been interviewed by Al Jazeera for 'The Big Picture' (to be screened in 2017) and by The History Channel for a forthcoming documentary on Adolf Hitler. Professor Robert Eaglestone was on BBC Radio 4 in December 2016, discussing the life of the late Elie Wiesel as part of channel's 'Great Lives' series alongside Hollywood actor Sir Ben Kingsley.
Royal Holloway is the only university in the UK to run an MA course solely dedicated to the field of Holocaust Studies. Our staff also supervise a large number of PhD students, currently working on topics as diverse as post-war fascism, colonial genocide, museum representations of the Holocaust, Holocaust literature, and Israeli foreign policy.
Our graduates have gone on to careers in a wide number of fields, such as academia, not-for-profit organisations, curation, education and the civil service. Many continue to publish books and journal articles, whilst others volunteer for organisations such as London's Jewish Museum, the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, the Holocaust Educational Trust and the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust. We welcome enquiries from prospective doctoral candidates.
We research in a range of disciplines, including all aspects of the history of Nazism, the persecution and mass murder of the Jews and other victims of Nazi racial-biological policies, as well as responses to Nazism; gender; Holocaust-related literary and cultural studies, film theory, media studies and philosophy. We welcome graduates in any of these areas, especially students with interdisciplinary projects or with projects that engage with other genocides.
The Research Institute provides a very lively research environment. Furthermore, every January, to mark Holocaust Memorial Day, we hold an annual public lecture, recently renamed the David Cesarani Memorial Lecture in honour of our late colleage, who died in October 2015. Recent speakers have included Robert Jan van Pelt, Ulrich Herbert, Dina Porat, Saul Friedländer, Dan Michman and Luke Holland.
In addition to supervising PhDs, the Institute runs a very successful taught MA programme in Holocaust Studies. It is taught by members of several different Royal Holloway departments and offers a wide interdisciplinary approach to the subject. Please contact Dr Simone Gigliotti for all MA Holocaust Studies enquiries and Professor Dan Stone for doctoral programme enquiries.
Professor David Cesarani OBE, 1956 - 2015
We were shocked and saddened by the death of Professor David Cesarani in October 2015, aged just 58. Professor Cesarani was an integral part of the Holocaust Research Institute and its activity, establishing connections with and obtaining sponsorship from organisations and institutions across the world.
Professor Cesarani was a pioneering historian and one of the world's leading experts on Jewish history, particularly regarding the history of the Holocaust. He wrote several books, including The Jewish Chronicle and Anglo-Jewry, 1841-1991 (1991); Eichmann: His Life and Crimes (2004); and Major Farran's Hat: Murder, Scandal and Britain's War Against Jewish Terrorism (2009). His final work, Final Solution: The Fate of the Jews 1933-1949, was published in January 2016.
Professor Cesarani also played a key role in Holocaust education and remembrance in the UK. He was a member of the Home Office Holocaust Memorial Day Strategic Group, which saw the creation of a national Holocaust Memorial Day. He wrote a number of educational resources for use in schools and teacher training, and made frequent appearances on television and radio. In 2005, Professor Cesarani was awarded an OBE for services to Holocaust education.
Our thoughts remain with his wife, Dawn, and his two children, Daniel and Hannah. He will be greatly missed by all of us at the Holocaust Research Institute. May he rest in peace.
Professor of Modern History and Director of The Holocaust Research Institute
Dan Stone is a historian of modern Europe with a particular interest in history of ideas. He studied at the University of Oxford where he was a Junior Research Fellow at New College (1996-1999) and a lecturer at the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies (1997-1999) and has been at Royal Holloway since 1999. Dan is co-editor of the journals Patterns of Prejudice and the Journal of Genocide Research and on the editorial boards of Critical Philosophy of Race, History of Communism in Europe, Hypothesis and Dapim: Studies on the Holocaust. He is on the international advisory board of the International Tracing Service (Bad Arolsen) and is a member of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust's Experts' Reference Group.
Professor Stone is the author of some seventy scholarly articles and nine books, including: Responses to Nazism in Britain 1933-1939: Before War and Holocaust (Palgrave, 2003), Histories of the Holocaust (Oxford University Press, 2010), Goodbye to All That? The Story of Europe since 1945 (Oxford University Press, 2014), The Liberation of the Camps: The End and Aftermath of the Holocaust (Yale University Press, 2015) and Concentration Camps: A Short History (Oxford University Press, 2017). He is also the editor of seven books, including The Historiography of the Holocaust (Palgrave, 2004), The Holocaust and Historical Methodology (Berghahn, 2012) and The Oxford Handbook of Postwar European History (Oxford University Press, 2012).
His next book is on concentration camps, for OUP's Very Short Introductions series (2017).
From October 2016 he will be on a three-year Leverhulme Trust Major Research Fellowship working on a project on the International Tracing Service, the history of the Holocaust and European history.
- the history and historiography of the Holocaust
- genocide studies
- history of race theory, eugenics and anthropology
- the cultural history of the right in Britain; theory of history.
Senior Lecturer/Reader in Holocaust Studies, Department of History and Deputy Director, The Holocaust Research Institute
Simone Gigliotti is Senior Lecturer/Reader in Holocaust Studies. Before joining Royal Holloway, she was based in the History Programme at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand (from 2004-2016). She has also held temporary positions at the University of Melbourne, and the University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica. Having written on a broad range of topics, her prevalent focus remains unearthing and analysing the victim and survivor experience in oral, written, visual and geographical accounts, and exploring how these accounts often intersect with, and differ from, perpetrator, humanitarian and other witnessing perspectives. Her research has also expanded to include studies of Jewish transmigration in imperial interwar and wartime refugee diasporas in regions where she has taught and lived (Asia-Pacific, Caribbean). Her current projects include a monograph about the home-seeking journeys of Jewish refugees and displaced persons from Nazi-era to post-war Europe that brings together history, geography, and cinema (Foot, Road, Camera: Home-seeking and Holocaust Cinema), and the large co-edited volume, The Wiley Companion to the Holocaust.
- The Holocaust and its representation
- visual narrative
- spatial history
- Jewish migration histories (displaced persons, transmigration, and refugee diasporas) children as victims of war and genocide
- testimony and witnessing.
Professor of Contemporary Literature and Thought
Robert Eaglestone is a graduate of Manchester (BA), Southampton (MA) and the University of Wales (PhD). He is the author of six books including Postmodernism and Holocaust Denial (Icon, 2001), The Holocaust and the Postmodern (Oxford University Press, 2004), The Broken Voice: Reading Post-Holocaust Literature (Oxford Univesity Press, 2017), and the editor or co-editor of seven books including Teaching Holocaust Literature and Film (Palgrave, 2008), Derrida’s Legacies (Routledge, 2008) and The Future of Trauma Theory(Routledge, 2013). He is the Series Editor of Routledge Critical Thinkers, which has 41 volumes to date. His work has been translated into five languages. In 2014 Robert was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship. He is a Fellow of the HEA and an AHRC Peer Assessor. He has advised the UK government’s Qualifications and Curriculum Development Authority, DfE and OfQual and the three English exam boards. Robert was a Literary Advisor to the British Council and is on the Executive Committee of the Forum for European Philosophy. He is co-chair of the organising committee for English: Shared Futures, a large disciplinary conference scheduled for 2017. He has spoken at many Literary Festivals and BBC Radio 4, and writes in the national and educational press.
Currently he is completing The Broken Voice: Reading Post-Holocaust Literature for OUP, a book on Plato and Aristotle for Routledge, and editing the Companion to Twenty-First Century Fiction, also for Routledge.
He had a Leverhume Award for 2016-7 for a project called 'The Resurgent Past'.
- Contemporary literature and literary theory
- contemporary philosophy
- Holocaust and Genocide studies.
Professor of Film Studies and Head of the Department of Media Arts
Barry Langford is a practicing professional screenwriter. His original short screenplay Torte Bluma was filmed in New York in summer 2004, with a cast including Stellan Skarsgaard and Simon McBurney, and premiered at the 2005 Edinburgh Film Festival. Torte Bluma was judged Best Drama at the 2005 Los Angeles International Short Film Festival and Best Film at the 2005 Palm Springs International Shorts Festival. Barry is the co-creator and co-author of the 6-part ITV drama series The Frankenstein Chronicles. His major publications are Film Genre: Hollywood and Beyond (Edinburgh University Press, 2005) and Post-Classical Hollywood: Film Industry, Style and Ideology since 1945 (Edinburgh University Press, 2010). The essay collection Teaching Holocaust Literature and Film (co-edited with Robert Eaglestone) was published in 2007.
Recent and forthcoming work includes essays on Siegfried Kracauer, Walter Benjamin, and the Holocaust; "revisionist" Westerns; suburban sexualities; narrative reversal as redemption in Holocaust film; Chris Marker’s politics; urban apocalypse and the theory of Michel de Certeau; time and narrative in The Lord of the Rings; national identity in George Lucas’ American Graffiti; the political unconscious of TV sitcoms; contemporary Holocaust film; and the theorisation of screenwriting. Barry is currently preparing Darkness Visible, a study of Holocaust film.
- Critical theory
- representations of the Holocaust in film and television
- theories of mass culture
- urban studies
- post-classical Hollywood
- film genre, especially the Western, science fiction film, and war films.
Lecturer, Department of History
Before joining Royal Holloway, Becky Jinks worked at the University of East Anglia and the University of Exeter. Dr Jinks’ first study, Representing Genocide: The Holocaust as Paradigm? (Bloomsbury, 2016) critically compares representations of genocide in film, literature, photography and memorialisation in order to explore how the representation of the Holocaust has influenced and shaped – or otherwise – the representation of other genocides. More recent and forthcoming work focuses mostly on modern Europe and its borderlands, for example Becky is completing a study of humanitarian relief, gender, and photography after the Armenian genocide, and also currently working on a social history of humanitarianism in Europe immediately following the First World War. Future research projects include a study of urban violence during the Yugoslav wars of the 1990s.
- The history and representation of genocide
- the history of humanitarianism
- social history approaches
- gender histories
- photographs as sources for historians.
Lecturer, Department of History
Dr Paris Chronakis teaches and researches on the history and memory of the Modern Mediterranean. His work explores questions of transition from empire to nation-state bringing together the interrelated histories of Jewish, Muslim and Christian urban middle classes from the late Ottoman Empire to the Holocaust. In the last years, his research and publications have expanded to post-imperial urban identities, Balkan War refugees, Zionism and anti-Zionism in interwar Europe, the Holocaust of Sephardi Jewry and digital Holocaust Studies. Currently, he is spearheading a digital history project to map and visualise the social networks of Jewish deportees in Nazi concentration camps. Dr Chronakis is on the editorial board of the Bulletin de Correspondance Hellénique Moderne et Contemporain. Dr Chronakis can be contacted by email at email@example.com.
Administrator, The Holocaust Research Institute
Imogen Dalziel is a second-year PhD candidate, supervised by Professor Dan Stone. Her thesis focuses on the development and use of digital technology at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum. She holds a BSc in Psychology from The University of Birmingham and an MA in Holocaust Studies from Royal Holloway. She was awarded the 2015 MA in Holocaust Studies Prize and has been granted a Davis Foundation PhD Scholarship. Imogen was a Regional Ambassador for the Holocaust Educational Trust from 2013-2016. She has volunteered with organisations including The Wiener Library, The Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, The Holocaust Centre in Nottinghamshire and the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, and has organised and/or spoken at several events for Holocaust Memorial Day. In July 2016, Imogen received an award from the Auschwitz Museum in recognition of voluntary service. In spring 2017, Imogen also taught part of an undergraduate module on the Holocaust at The University of Birmingham. She has appeared in The Independent and The Jewish Chronicle and has been interviewed on local BBC radio regarding her voluntary work in Holocaust education. She writes an online blog to promote Holocaust awareness and remembrance, which was a finalist in the ‘Education’ category at the UK Blog Awards 2016.
- The development of Holocaust museums
- Holocaust memorialisation
- the impact of digital technology and social media on Holocaust memory and awareness
- Holocaust 'tourism'
- dark tourism
- public and media responses to death and the corpse.
Senior Lecturer, Department of Drama and Theatre
Bryce Lease is currently Senior Lecturer in Drama and Theatre, having lectured previously at the Universities of Bristol and Exeter. He has written essays on Polish theatre and culture, Polish/Jewish relations, Lithuanian/Jewish relations, and is currently working on projects that address the performance of cultural memory in museums and archives. In 2016, his monograph After ’89: Polish Theatre and the Politicalwas published with Manchester University Press. His writings on contemporary international performance have been published in The Drama Review (TDR), Contemporary Theatre Review (CTR), Theatre Research International (TRI), Theatre Journal, European Stages, Safundi and New Theatre Quarterly (NTQ). His research has been funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), the British Academy, the Standing Conference of University Drama Departments (SCUDD) and the Brown International Advanced Research Institute (BIARI). He is Subject Editor for European and South African Theatre/Performance for the Routledge Performance Archive.
- Cultural memory
- interconnections between politics, nascent democracies and nationalism
- the formation of publics and counterpublics
- gender and sexuality
- cultural geography
- Central and Eastern European culture and history (Poland in particular)
- museums, archives and performance
- testimony and witnessing
- European theatre and performance.
Lecturer in Modern European History, Department of History
Andrea Mammone is a historian of modern Europe at Royal Holloway, University of London. He has published extensively on Europe, and regularly contributes to the media and press. His Transnational Neofascism in France and Italy is published by Cambridge University Press. He co-edited Mapping the Extreme Right in Contemporary Europe and Varieties of Right-wing Extremism in Europe, and some journal editions on the far right in contemporary Europe. He also co-edited the widely praised Italy Today: The Sick Man of Europe, Un Paese normale? Saggi sull’Italia contemporanea, and the Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Italy. Dr Mammone has been interviewed by Al Jazeera, the BBC, Sky, O Globo, To Vima, The Economist, The Observer, and Voice of America, among others. He has also written op-eds for the International Herald Tribune, The Independent, Foreign Affairs, The Guardian, The New York Times, Reuters, Al Jazeera, and the New Statesman.
- Post-war and recent far-right parties
- interwar fascism
- transnational groups
- anti-immigration stances
Doctoral students supervised by Professor Dan Stone
Appropriation & Memory: A Spatial History of Drancy
Department of History
- Architectural history
- museums and memorials
- sites of memory relating to the Holocaust
- representations of the Holocaust across disciplines.
World Jewish Relief: A Community Endeavour Shaped by a Generation of Refugees
Department of History
- Humanitarian aid and relief during the Holocaust
- British reponses to the Holocaust
- refugees and displaced persons
- refugee rehabilitation
- Jewish social welfare
- the relationship between humanitarian organisations and the refugees in their care.
Picturing Response: An Historical Analysis of the Ways in Which Photographs have Shaped Responses to Atrocity Over the Past 150 Years
Department of History
- Visual culture
- representations of atrocity
- the use of photography
- reception theory
- history education
- the history of Holocaust education.
The British Occupation of Egypt and its Consequences for the Greek and Greek-Cypriot Communities
Department of History
- Mediterranean port cities
- Representations of philanthropic elites
- Politics in the Eastern Mediterranean
- History of the Holocaust
Microhistories of the Holocaust and the Use of Family History: The Families Ganz/Brenzinger, c1871 – 1945
Department of History
- Microhistories of the Holocaust
- Alltagsgeschichte of the Holocaust
- Cultural History of the German Bourgeoisie (Jewish and non-Jewish), c.1871 – 1945
- Family History
- Conservatism and National Socialism
Assessing the Evolving Relationship between the Prosecutor and the Historian from the 1945-46 Nuremberg Trials to Irving vs. Penguin Books & Lipstadt (2000)
Department of History
- Holocaust law
- human rights law
- the role of the historian in law
- development of international criminal court and law.
Doctoral students supervised by Professor Robert Eaglestone
Mr James Bulgin
The Holocaust and the Cultural Apocalyptic Imagination of the Cold War
Department of English
The way in which the Holocaust has incrementally assumed the status of what James defines as foundational memory, and has been appropriated and used as a means of articulating the inconceivable. James' work concerns both historical and political writing and fictional representations. As his thesis title suggests, James focuses particularly on the way in which the collective memory of the Holocaust - in all its forms - was mobilised directly and indirectly to anticipate and imagine the concept of nuclear war during the Cold War.
Representing Camps in Holocaust and US Detention Camp Literature
Department of English
- Holocaust literature
- Contemporary detention camp literature
- Victims, perpetrators, bystanders, deniers
- Giorgio Agamben, Hannah Arendt
Fragmentation and Reprise: Traumatic Disruption and Compulsion in the Holocaust Literature of Charlotte Delbo
Department of English
- The literary oeuvre of Charlotte Delbo
- Holocaust literature and Holocaust studies
- Memory studies
- French literature and culture, 1945–85
- French Communism and the French Resistance
Doctoral students supervised by Mr Rudolf Muhs
Dangerous Art: The Influence of Early Architecture within German Culture and the Shaping of National Socialist Ideology
Department of History
- The history of German culture
- Holocaust studies.
Recent graduates supervised by Professor Dan Stone
- Jan Lambertz, ‘Early Postwar Holocaust Knowledge and Jewish Missing Persons’ (2018)
- Eldad Ben Aharon, ‘The Geopolitics of Genocide in the Middle East and the Second Cold War: Israeli-Turkish American Relations and the Contested Memories of the Armenian Genocide, 1978-1988’ (2019)
- Robert Sherwood, ‘A Comprehensive Study into the United Kingdom War Crimes Investigation Teams in Relation to World War II’ (2019)
- Benjamin Bland, ‘Subcultural Fascism(s) and Their Reflections in Music Culture, c. 1975-1999’ (2019)
- Imogen Dalziel, ‘Authority, Authenticity and Audience: The Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum’s Adaptation to the Digital Museum’ (2020)
- Maddy White, ‘A Contextual Analysis of Holocaust Oral Testimony in Britain and Canada’ (2020)
For more information, please see Professor Stone’s Pure page.