Newsletter December 2016


The European Association of the Museum of The History of Polish Jews is grateful for your support of the POLIN Museum in Warsaw.

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Great News from POLIN!

… We can already report that 2016 has, for us, been quite extraordinary.

– POLIN Museum won the most prestigious awards for a museum in Europe.

– The Association of the Jewish Historical Institute of Poland supported a wide range of high quality programs.

– We also embarked on several bold new initiatives.

The two key institutions that we support, POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews and the Emanuel Ringelblum Jewish Historical Institute, excelled in 2016, thanks to the support of private donors from around the world and funding from our public partners, the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage and the City of Warsaw.

Piotr Wislicki, President of the Association of the Jewish Historical Institute of Poland

Save the date:

Extraordinary Trip to Poland
June 29-July 2, 2017

Almost every year, the AEMJP organizes a trip to Poland, with a double objective: to explore the new Poland rediscovering and learning to cherish its Jewish heritage, and to help the development of the Polin Museum, which depends on the generous support of its international Friends and Donors.

Join us for this event. We speak English, French, Hebrew and Polish, and we promise you that you will participate in events and meetings that are absolutely unique and organized exclusively for the Friends of the Museum.
Please share this information with your family and friends! More information will be soon available here.

Donation campaign


The POLIN Museum needs You!

The European Association of the Museum of The History of Polish Jews (AEMJP) has been supporting the Polin Museum since 2011.

In current political turmoil, and with the decreasing stability of political powers, we need your help more than ever. Your donation to the AEMJP will enable the Association to assist the Polin Museum to continue functioning as a going concern.

Support us! Read more…

News from the POLIN Museum

Philip Glass’ 80 birthday in Polin

Concert, January 21, 2017


The Polin Museum will celebrate the 80th birthday of Philip Glass, one of the most important composers of our time and an American Jew from Poland.  On January 21, 2017, an extraordinary  concert will take place in the Museum: Pianohooligan & Sinfonia Varsovia.

This is a perfect pretext to try to enjoy the Warsaw snow and extraordinary music. Read more… 


Museums and Their Publics at Sites of Conflicted History

International conference, March 13-15, 2017

POLIN Museum organizes an international conference on the difficulties of dealing with memory in societies that have recently experienced conflict and violence, radical geopolitical and ideological change, and socio-economic and technological challenges.

Read more… (And see the call for papers)

Europeana Prize

On November 8, 2016, the Polin Museum of the History of Polish Jews received the European Museum Academy Prize at the annual meeting of the Europeana Network Association in Riga. Awarded every few years, the prize recognizes organizations, researchers, and cultural institutions that create pioneering museums.

Read more…   See it on Facebook.

Culture en Pologne


Warlikowski in Paris

Polish stage director Krzysztof Warlikowski is well known for his numerous attempts to deal with the insupportable void left by the Polish Jews after the Shoah. This latter subject was the main theme of Warlikowski’s tragedy entitled (A)pollonia.
In November and December 2016, he was invited by two prestigious French cultural institutions, the Parisian Opéra Palais Garnier and by the Théâtre Chaillot, to present his latest works. His original piece Les Français is inspired by a very personal reading of Marcel Proust, who depicts a world soon to be destroyed, world where the Dreyfus affair announces the imminent destruction of the Jews of Europe. He also presented a version of Iphigenia in Tauris, a 1779 opera by Christoph Gluck.

Read more on the Théâtre Chaillot website.

Refugees’ Conversations on stage

The Polin Museum hosted, in November 2016, a theatre piece “Rozmowy Uchodźców” (Refugees’ Conversations). A Bertolt Brecht’s 1930’s world is confronted with contemporary political discourses and examples of manipulations, all presented against the background of a fear of the arrival of migrants to Europe. The question asked by the spectacle is “how a refugee alters the imagination of those who do not want to have migrants in their countries. We want to show that refugees are not a threat”.  Read more… (In Polish)

Politics and society


Political crisis over the freedom of information

Serious restrictions on the Right to Information provoked protests of citizens and the parliamentary opposition in Poland, and resulted in a serious political crisis. Citizens tried to block exits from the building of the Polish Parliament until the middle of the night on Friday, December 16th, and not to let Law and Justice MPs exit. Further demonstrations were taking place during the whole following weekend. Read more…

Polish-Israeli Friendship Statement signed

The Prime Minister of the Polish Government Beata Szydło and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu co-signed a joint Israeli-Polish statement during November 2016. The statement expressed the satisfaction of friendly relations and “the special partnership between the two countries, the unreserved mutual support and reciprocal respect for each other’s sovereignty and the shared recognition of the political, security and economic needs of both Countries”.
One of the passages of the statement, devoted to the shared memory of the Second World war, was criticized by some of the Israeli media suggesting that “Israel adopts Warsaw’s narrative and ignores Holocaust crimes by Poles”:
“Both Governments firmly oppose any form of discrimination on racial grounds and anti-Semitism, as well as any attempts at distorting the history of the Jewish or Polish peoples by denying or diminishing the victimhood of the Jews during the Holocaust, or using the erroneous terms of memory such as “Polish death camps”.”
Anecdotically, Jesus, a Jew, was declared “King of Poland” in a ceremony at the Church of Divine Mercy in Krakow, Poland on November 19, by the Catholic Bishops of Poland and in the presence of President Andrzei Duda.

Prison for Anti-Semitism in Poland

On November 18, 2015, a symbolically terrible event took place in Wroclaw: during a demonstration against refugees organized by the extreme right (ONR – Obóz Narodowo-Radykalny), an effigy of an ultra-Orthodox Jew holding the flag of the European Union was burnt.
On November 21 2016, the man responsible for this act was sentenced to 10 months in prison. The sentence is not yet final. It is indeed reassuring to see that such an action is not tolerated.

Living Memory

Jan Karski posthumously awarded by the Polish President


President Andrzej Duda has posthumously promoted Polish World War II hero Jan Karski to the rank of Brigadier General.Karski (1914-2000) was a diplomat, army officer and emissary of Polish underground organizations during the Nazi German occupation of Poland. His role was essential in informing Western authorities of the atrocities inflicted to the Jews in Nazi concentration camps.

The President spoke of Karski as of “a great man and a great Pole, who was unwavering in his pursuit of the truth and moral integrity, and who wanted human rights and dignity to be respected worldwide.”

Museums Around the World


The Emigration Museum in Gdynia, Poland (Muzeum Emigracji) was nominated to the prestigious EMYA prize for 2017. In 2016, this prize was awarded to the Polin Museum. This new institution, which officially opened in 2015, has the mission “to recount the fates of millions of both anonymous and famous people – whose names emerge in the context of great achievements in science, sports, business, and the arts. It is the ambition of this institution to make them known to Poles at home, but it is also to encourage our compatriots living at home and abroad to get to know each other”. Read more on the Museum website.


Grazyna Kulczyk plans to open up a museum of modern art in Susch, Switzerland. Situated in a building of a former brewery, the museum will have 19 rooms and more than 1.2 thousand Sq. m of exhibition space. The building will also include a library, lecture hall and the headquarters of the Foundation. The Susch Museum will promote a dialogue between art in Central and Eastern Europe and art made in Europe in general.


We are delighted to observe the well-deserved success of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington D.C, which opened in September 2016. Numerous objects from its collection are now available online on the Museum website (click here to know more). Memory of integration and its difficulties, which is the main theme of the Polin Museum, is also at the center of the preoccupations of the NMAAHC.

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