“Testifying Symbols: The History of an anti-Semitic Image Cult”
Dr. Zoltán Kékesi is currently Assistant Professor at the Department for Art Theory and Curatorial Studies, University of Fine Arts (Hungary). He holds a PhD in Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies from Eötvös-Loránd University in Hungary. As a J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Fellow, Dr. Kékesi will be conducting research for his project entitled “Testifying Symbols: The History of an anti-Semitic Image Cult.”
Dr. Kékesi is fluent in English and German. He is also able to read Spanish.
Dr. Kékesi’s most recent book is Agents of Liberation: Holocaust Memory in Contemporary Art and Documentary Film (Budapest and New York: Central European University Press, 2015). He is the author of several articles as well, published in Hungarian, German, and English.
While in residence at the Mandel Center, Dr. Kékesi researched the history of the Tiszaeszlár cult from the 1880’s until the present. His research addressed the following questions: How do images contribute to the (re-)production of exclusionary communities and to the (re-)emergence of anti-Semitic cultures? How can hate images address audiences in different cultural, social, political, and geographical contexts?
Dr. Kékesi used the Museums various collections to further this work, including archival holdings related to postwar anti-Semitism, neo-Nazi movements, Hungarian war criminals and national socialist exiles.
Dr. Kékesi was in residence at the Mandel Center until June 30, 2017.