Statement of Protest on Trial of the Two Leading Polish Historians

New York, NY (February 05, 2021)

We are writing to express our concern about the trial of Professors Barbara Engelking and Jan Grabowski- two Polish Holocaust scholars who have been sued with the assistance of the government-funded “Polish League Against Defamation” (Reduta Dobrego Imienia). This is part of an ongoing campaign against historians of the Holocaust and their work. It is also an attempt to use the legal system to discourage independent scholarship on Polish-Jewish relations during the Holocaust.

We hope that the Polish justice system will prove itself independent of political pressure. In the name of Academic Advisory Council of the Center for Jewish History, whose partners’ archives comprise the world’s largest and most comprehensive archive of the modern Jewish experience outside of Israel, we call upon the government of Poland to protect researchers against politically motivated interference in the pursuit of independent scholarship rooted in archival evidence.

Center for Jewish History, Academic Advisory Council

Beth S. Wenger, University of Pennsylvania, Chair
Jeffrey Veidlinger, University of Michigan, Associate Chair

Lila Corwin Berman, Temple University
Francesca Bregoli, City University of New York
Michelle Chesner, Columbia University
Glenn Dynner, Sarah Lawrence College
Marion A. Kaplan, New York University
Joshua Karlip, Yeshiva University
Rachel Kranson, University of Pittsburgh
Marjorie Lehman, Jewish Theological Seminary
Deborah Dash Moore, University of Michigan
Ronnie Perelis, Yeshiva University
Ellie R. Schainker, Emory University
Daniel Schwartz, George Washington University
Eliyahu Stern, Yale University