A new, interactive multimedia exhibition titled «Road to Victory: Soviet Jews during World War II» will be presented at the Russian Centre for Science and Culture (RCSC) in Paris from January 30th through April 10th. Thetraveling exhibit, a joint collaboration by the Blavatnik Archive Foundation (USA) and Rossotrudnichestvo (Russia), honors the 75th Anniversary of the Great Victory over Fascism.
While Jewish victimhood in the Holocaust is well known and documented, the participation of Jewish soldiers in service of the Red Army and its allies during World War II remains, until now, a largely untold chapter of modern Jewish history.
Approximately 450,000 Jewish soldiers fought in the Soviet Armed Forces and partisan detachments throughout the war. These brave men and women enlisted for both patriotic and personal reasons, fought in all branches of the most ethnically-diverse military in the world, and contributed significantly to the defeat of Nazi Germany. The exhibit brings to life the personal experiences of those who witnessed first-hand the enormous sacrifices required to secure final victory.
Eight interactive displays in French, Russian and English present intimate, deeply moving details on the lives of Jewish soldiers during the war. The documentation, unseen anywhere else, includes video testimony, wartime letters and diaries, and photographs collected and organized by the Blavatnik Archive’s Veteran Oral History Project which has conducted interviews with 1,200 veterans in eleven countries. The touching individual stories are brought into clearhistorical focus through narratives, maps, and infographics, enhanced by musical accompaniments. A final display provides the names, biographies and portraits of over 1,000 Jewish Red Army veterans interviewed by the Blavatnik Archive over the years.
Marking the 75th Anniversary of the end of the war, «Road to Victory: Soviet Jews in World War II» will be shown throughout 2020 in Paris (January 30th – April), Israel (May-August), and Berlin (September-October). The celebratory opening night of the exhibition on Wednesday, January 29th at RCSC in Paris will include representatives of French Veteran organizations (L'Union française des associations de combattants et de victimes de guerre, L'Union nationale des combattants, etc.); co-organizers Rossotrudnichestvo and Blavatnik Archive Foundation; the Director-General of UNESCO; representatives of local and international Jewish associations including the World, European and Russian Jewish Congresses; embassy officials; and leading cultural and academic institutions among others.
About the Blavatnik Archive.
The Blavatnik Archive was founded in 2005 by the American and British philanthropist and industrialist Len Blavatnik. The Archive is a nonprofit foundation dedicated to collecting, preserving and disseminating primary resources that contribute to the study of 20th-century Jewish and world history, with a special emphasis on World War II. More information can be found at www.blavatnikarchive.org