Jewish Berlin POI6 Monument to Jewish Victims of Fascism

Monument to Jewish Victims of Fascism






Resistance can vary through different acts, however, a strong form of resistance for Jewish Berlin are the monuments. At Grosse Hamburger Str. 26, 10115 Berlin, Memorial Jewish Cemetery is there as a Monument to Jewish Victims of Fascism and was placed in 1985. This memorial was created in 1957 for the Ravensbrück concentration camp, but was incomplete and it was finally finished and moved to Berlin in 1985. It is currently guarded frequently because of the threat of attacks on the memorial. Will Lammert created the monument comprising of thirteen statues. When the bronze statues were moved to Berlin, they were the first memorial to Jewish victims of the Nazis in the city. Ultimately the memorial would have served a reminder to the Jewish victims of fascism. The sculpture "Jewish Victims of Fascism" memorial was built on the site of what was once a home for the elderly. This spot was also used by the Nazi's during their reign as a holding camp for Jews in Berlin. This was destroyed with the graveyard during the war and it was used again after street fights led to deaths. Since then, the area was cleaned and purposed into a cemetery with a basin by the entrance and information posted about its history. Overall, the Memorial Jewish Cemetery has many unique features that show resistance through their memorials.


The Memorial of Jewish Cemetery was a form of resistance because it shows remembrance to those lost during the oppression. With the Monument to Jewish Victims of Fascism originally going to be located at the Ravensbrück concentration camp, having it moved represented resistance because it demonstrated Nazi refusal in Berlin. Manya Moskowicz was a survivor of the Ravensbrück concentration camp and stated that even when a flag went missing from the pole, hope was gained, which shows how resistance was important to Jewish inhabitants of Berlin. This demonstrates that World War II was a time of unrest and uneasiness for the Jewish population in Germany. Even after the war when Jews returned to Berlin, they wanted to destroy the fascist remains, especially for those who were in East Berlin under Soviet control and there were still no religious freedoms. The fact that the monuments were constructed to preserve the memory of the terrors the Jewish population went through proves how devastating this was. The monuments were created for the purpose that those who pass by would reflect and consider the actions of the past. Those who visit sites and monuments become part of the historical memory. Therefore, even just having the memorial as a memory in Berlin acts as a point of resistance and strength for the Jewish community. The resistance lives on through theses memorials and monuments that will remind the people in Berlin about the atrocities that Jews faced.


"Alter Jüdischer Friedhof (Old Jewish Cemetery)." 2017. Alter Jüdischer Friedhof. Accessed November 23.

Laganà, Dario-Jacopo. 2017. "First Jewish Cemetery - Große Hamburger Straße." Elephant in Berlin. Accessed November 23.

Moskowiez, Manya. 2017. "Primary Sources: A Survivor's Account." Ravensbruck. Accessed November 23.

"Will Lammert." 2017. Accessed November 23.

Young, James E. "Reconstructions of history: From Jewish memory to nationalized commemoration of Kristallnacht in Germany." Jews, Germans, Memory: Reconstructions of Jewish Life in Germany (1996).

Young, James E. The texture of memory: Holocaust memorials and meaning. Yale University Press, 1993.


The avenues through which people resisted the Nazi regime clearly were quite numerous. People resisted in a number of ways. First, they could resist passively, as in the case of the failed Nazi Boycott of Jewish businesses in 1933. Whether out of a deliberate attempt at protest or simply the result of indifference, the fact that 'ordinary' Germans disregarded the Jewish boycott was a form of resistance to the regime and its anti-Semitic policies. Secondly, resistance could come from someplace as unexpected as the police. In the case of the New Synagogue, the goals of the Kristallnacht could not be fully realized due to the act of one police officer. Thirdly, there is the case of the Herbert Baum resistance group. Here it was possible to glimpse an example of active resistance. Indeed, by distributing leaflets and spreading graffiti around Berlin, Baum and his group's members engaged in concrete acts of subversion against Nazi rule. Resistance also came more indirectly through the pressures of civil society. The case of the 1943 Rosenstrasse protest remains an evocative symbol of this type of resistance. Indeed, throughout the 1930s the Nazis were often forced to compromise on some of their most hardline ideological views in order to prevent a potentially destabilizing uprising. Such a reality led to the begrudging acceptance of mixed and intermarried Jews in Nazi Germany. The case of Otto Weidt speaks to the ability to resist from within the Nazi system. By bribing the Gestapo, Weidt could manipulate the system to his advantage while not overtly challenging the authority of the regime. Finally, our last point of interest speaks to resistance through memory. By turning a site of Nazi violence into a monument to the victims of fascism, it was possible to overcome the initial desecration of the old cemetery, even decades later. All of these people and events should not be forgotten, as they are certainly in many ways the true heroes to this story.

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