Remnants of Daily Life – Case Study: Oyneg Shabes Archive

This week, we will look at the documents and records that survive as remnants of daily life, using the Oyneg Shabes Archive as a case study. This archive was compiled by a group of Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto, led by historian Dr. Emanuel Ringelblum. With the direct aim to document life under Nazi persecution, they collected testimonies, wrote reports, and preserved documents published in the ghetto including those from the ghetto leadership, the underground and community and cultural groups. The archive was buried and only parts of it have been recovered post-war. In this session, we will consider how sources pertaining to everyday life, such as the concert programmes, letters, and school schedules contained in the Oyneg Shabes Archive can contribute to our research.

Have a look through the ‘From the Archives’ section of Yad Vashem’s website dedicated to the Oyneg Shabes Archive to get a feel of the different document they collected.

Samuel D. Kassow, ‘Traces of Life and Death: Texts from the Archive’, Who Will Write Our History? Emanuel Ringelblum, the Warsaw Ghetto, and the Oyneg Shabes Archive, (Indiana University Press, 2007), pp. 225-284.