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Exile. Experience and Testimony // Touring exhibition based on the permanent exhibition of the German Exile Archive 1933–1945 to visit the USA

Despite visa requirements and a restrictive quota system that limited immigration options depending on the country of origin, the USA was the most important country of exile during the National Socialist era, admitting a total of 130,000 to 140,000 German-speaking refugees.

The great importance of the USA as a country of exile for those persecuted by National Socialism is also evident in the permanent exhibition. This can be seen in the numerous exhibits, including those relating to aid organisations operating in the USA, the everyday, linguistic or professional challenges in exile or the manifold resistance activities which exiles engaged in.

These are just a few of the themes addressed by the exhibition, which will be touring the USA under the title "Exile. Experience and Testimony". The German Exile Archive 1933-1945 will be displaying reproductions of 35 exhibits at various locations. The exhibits exemplify the individually very different experiences of the exiles in the USA. Introductory texts on specific themes and detailed descriptions of the items (including biographical information and informations about institutions) complete the presentation of the exhibits.

The touring exhibition is a part of the "Year of German-American Friendship Initiative 2018/19" organised by the German Federal Foreign Office, the Goethe-Institut, and the Federation of German Industries.

It opened on 18 May 2018 at the Loyola University, Chicago, for the conference of the North American Society for Exile Studies (NASES). The exhibition will start its journey through the USA from Chicago in mid-June; the tour will last just over one year. Stops will include Washington D.C., Durham (New Hampshire), South Hadley (Massachusetts), Los Angeles, and New York. (Photo: L. to R.: Prof. Inge Hansen-Schaberg, Chairperson of the Gesellschaft für Exilforschung e.V.; Dr. Sylvia Asmus, Director of the German Exile Archive 1933–1945. Prof. Helga Schreckenberger, Chairperson of the North American Society for Exile Studies and Prof. Reinhard Andress, Loyola University, Modern Languages and Literatures)

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Dates and venues of the touring exhibition

  • Loyola University Chicago; Cudahy Library; Chicago, Illinois
    18 May to 1 June 2018
  • German American Heritage Museum of the USA; Washington, DC
    12 June to 15 August 2018
  • University of New Hampshire; University Library; Durham, New Hampshire
    13 November to 18 December 2018
  • Mount Holyoke College; Williston Memorial Library; South Hadley, Massachusetts
    1 to 28 February 2019
  • Feuchtwanger Memorial Library; Los Angeles, California
    15 March to 31 May 2019


Last update: 13.12.2018

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