Exhibition and Symposium on the Èvian Conference

The Memorial to the German Resistance and the Center for Research on Antisemitism at the Technical University of Berlin has a special exhibition called “Closed Border. The 1938 international refugee conference of Évian”. In this context they are inviting to an academic Symposium called “Refugee crisis 1938 and today? On the relevance of the 1938 Évian Conference”.

Representatives from 32 different countries met from 6 to 15 July 1938 in the beach town of Évian-les-Bains on the French shore of lake Geneva. Initiated by US President Roosevelt, the goal of the conference was to come to a solution to the problem of Jewish refugees from Germany and Austria. For different reasons, the participants rejected taking in additional refugees. Additionally, they avoided both mentioning Nazi Germany as responsible for the refugee crisis and the Jews as the main victims. The Évian conference became a symbol for Jews in dire need of refuge were largely abandoned by the international community.

The exhibition, curated by a team of scientists under Dr. Winfried Meyer, reminds us of the background, the course and the consequences of the conference. An emphasis is placed on the states that participated in the conference.

The Symposium considers the relevance of the Évian Conference and looks at the international dimensions and impact of the conference. It takes place on 20 September 2018, from 09:30 to 18:30 at the Memorial to the German Resistance.

Photo: Zentrum für Antisemitismusforschung/TU Berlin/American Jewish Joint Distrubution Committee Archives, New York, NY