"The Jewish Struggle of Survival in German Occupied Soviet Territories"
Anika Walke is a Ph.D. candidate in the History of Consciousness Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She received an M.A. in sociology at the Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg in Germany. For her Research Fellowship of the Miles Lerman Center for the Study of Jewish Resistance, Ms. Walke conducted research for her project, “The Jewish Struggle of Survival in German Occupied Soviet Territories.”
Ms. Walke is the author of Jüdische Partisaninnen: Der verschwiegene Widerstand in der Sowjetunion [Female Jewish Partisans: The Untold Resistance in the Soviet Union] (2007) as well as several book chapters and journal articles, including, “Remembering and Recuperation: Memory Work in the Post-Soviet Context.” Zeitgeschichte 36.2 (2009), “Reconsidering the Past: Interviews with Jewish Survivors of the Nazi Genocide in the Post-Soviet Context” in editor Noel Packard’s Sociology of Memory: Papers from the Spectrum (2009), and “‘Wir haben über dieses Thema nie gesprochen:’ Jüdischer Überlebenskampf und sowjetische Kriegserinnerung” [“We Never Talked about this Topic”: The Jewish Fight for Survival and Soviet War Memory] in editors Micha Brumlik and Karol Sauerland’s Osteuropa und der Holocaust: Geschichte und ihre Aufarbeitung (forthcoming, 2009). She is a recipient of the International Peace Scholarship from the P.E.O Sisterhood, the University of California, Santa Cruz Humanities Global Outreach Fellowship, the Ph.D. Dissertation Fellowship from the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation in Berlin, the Hadassah-Brandeis Junior Research Award, and is a two-time recipient of the DAAD Fellowship. She participated in the six-week intensive reading-comprehension course Reading Yiddish for Holocaust Research sponsored by Indiana University and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. A native speaker of German, she has language skills in Russian and Yiddish in addition to English.
During her tenure at the Center, Ms. Walke researched Jewish resistance in German-occupied Belorussia during the Holocaust. Using first-person accounts, Ms. Walke studied Soviet Jewish survivors’ experiences immediately before, during, and after World War II in order to document the narratives of women and men who survived in hiding and as members of Jewish and Soviet partisan units. Ms. Walke’s work traces how and why this history has been precluded from the official war portrayal in the (Post-) Soviet context. Her research suggests that gender and ethnic origin are crucial for understanding this preclusion. Ms. Walke’s research also demonstrates that women’s labor was essential for the struggle for survival in German-occupied Soviet territories. Ms. Walke used the Museum’s extensive archival and oral history collections to carry out her research.
Ms. Walke was in residence at the Mandel Center from January 4 to July 30, 2010.