Aktuelle Fellows des Zentrums für Holocaust-Studien

Johannes Meerwald ist Doktorand am Fritz Bauer Institut in Frankfurt am Main. Seine Masterarbeit über die spanische Häftlingsgruppe im KZ Dachau ist mit dem Stanislav Zámečník-Studienpreis des Comité International de Dachau prämiert. Nach dem Studium arbeitete Meerwald für die KZ-Gedenkstätte Dachau an der Erforschung des KZ-Außenlagerkomplexes Allach. Sein laufendes Projekt wird von der Stiftung Ökohaus finanziert.

In seiner Arbeit untersucht Johannes Meerwald die Charakteristika der späten Phase des Holocaust in Südbayern. Das Ziel der Arbeit ist es, den Zeitraum zwischen Mai 1944 und Mai 1945 als einen radikalisierten Abschnitt innerhalb der Entwicklungsgeschichte des Holocaust darzustellen. Diese Radikalisierung machte sich nicht zuletzt dadurch bemerkbar, dass an der „Heimatfront“, anders als im Besatzungskontext, die Grenzen zwischen den jüdischen Verfolgten und der „Volksgemeinschaft“ zunehmend verschwommen. In seinem Projekt untersucht Meerwald daher insbesondere die Beziehungsgeflechte zwischen den nichtjüdischen Deutschen und den „Judenlagern“, sowie den dort inhaftierten Häftlingen. Des Weiteren fragt er danach, inwiefern sich die nahende deutsche Kriegsniederlage auf die Verhaltensweisen der klassischen Tätergruppen, sowie der Zivilisten und damit auch auf die Erfahrungen und Handlungsspielräume der Jüdinnen und Juden in Südbayern auswirkte. Meerwald verfolgt in seiner Arbeit Saul Friedländers Vorschlag einer „integrierten Geschichte“ und hinterfragt starre Täter-Opfer-Zuschauer Kategorisierungen. Aufgrund dieses multiperspektivischen Ansatzes wertet er neben Häftlingserinnerungen und Dokumenten aus den Beständen der SS, der Organisation Todt und den Rüstungsunternehmen auch Quellen zivilgesellschaftlicher Provenienz aus.

Während seines Aufenthaltes in München untersucht Johannes Meerwald hauptsächlich die im Institutsarchiv verwahrten Bestände zu den Reichsbehörden, den Konzentrationslagern, sowie den Dachauer Prozessen. Ebenso beschäftigt er sich mit den Nachlässen einzelner NS-Täter und Akteure.


Benet Lehmann is a PhD student at the International Graduate Centre for the Study of Culture (GCSC) of the Justus-Liebig-Universität Giessen. He studied in Hamburg, Berlin and Jerusalem and holds a M. A. in History. Next to the topics of his current Phd project, his further research areas are the transformation of German memory culture, public history and the far right. He is also writing a biography of a German Holocaust Witness, which will be published in 2022.

During his research stay as a Junior Fellow at the ZfHS, Benet Lehmann will be conducting research for his PhD project with the title “Visual Power. Wehrmacht Photographs from "the East" and their biographies (1939-2021)”. The aim is to investigate the phenomenon of Wehrmacht soldiers posing with dead bodies. The study is divided into two parts, an investigation of the performative practices leading to and within the pictures as well as practices with the images after 1945, i.e., the subsequent cultures of knowledge and identity. Overall, the study will contain 20 exemplified biographies of pictures from the moment they were taken until present times. At the Leibniz Institute for Contemporary History, Benet Lehmann will research at the IfZ archive, at different archives in Munich and institutions such as museums, publishing companies or the judiciary.


Olga Kartashova is a Ph.D. candidate in Hebrew and Judaic studies at New York University. Kartashova specializes in the Holocaust history of Eastern Europe, its aftermath, memory, historiography, and trials. She holds MA degrees in Comparative History from Central European University and Holocaust Studies from Haifa University. She completed internships at Yad Vashem, Ghetto Fighters’ House, and the Open Society Archives in Budapest. In 2020, Olga worked as a researcher at the USHMM on a project broadly devoted to genocides and justice. She currently leads a monthly research seminar “The Forgotten Roots of International Law” in cooperation with the Minerva Center for Human Rights at Tel Aviv University where she was a fellow during 2021-2022. Olga is engaged in Digital Humanities and is exploring ways to incorporate technology into Holocaust research, archives, and museums.

International Networks and Jewish Efforts to Prosecute Nazi Criminals in Poland, 1944-1955

Kartashova’s project explores Jewish voices in the post-war trials of Holocaust perpetrators in Poland. It builds upon existing research on Nazi and collaborator trials (Finder and Prusin 2018, Kornbluth 2021) and contributes with a novel study of what surviving Jews understood as justice, how they approached the Polish government in the search for it, and how they supported investigations and trials. At the center of the project are Jewish national institutions active in Poland in the late 1940s that represented survivors and served as intermediaries between them and the authorities. She claims that in circumstances of antisemitic hatred and developing conflict of victimhood, Polish Jews made efforts towards achieving justice and saw Jewish institutions as legitimate representatives of victims and their families. This and the widespread international networks used for information exchange among survivors, domestic and foreign Jewish communities, and national and international legal bodies developing international criminal law, ensured the abundance of sources and witness accounts for the Holocaust-related trials and increased the chances of sentencing perpetrators.


Hana Green is a Doctoral Candidate in History at the Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Clark University. She holds a BA in History with a certificate in Holocaust Studies from the University of Florida and an MA in Holocaust studies from the University of Haifa. 

Green’s dissertation project examines passing as a Jewish response to persecution and considers the varied experiences of Jewish women who passed across Europe as a wartime survival mechanism. Centering the experiences and identity transformations of Jewish passers, Green’s project considers the broader phenomenon of passing during the Holocaust and explores what it meant to pass under the guise of a false identity in extremis. Drawing on diverse cases and tracing Jewish women’s prewar identities through their adoption of false personas, her dissertation assesses the ways in which individuals adapted to an assumed identity, underscoring factors such as gender, identity, and individual agency. Additionally, Green’s project seeks to highlight passing as a distinct mechanism of survival during the Holocaust. 

Green currently holds a DAAD one-year grant for doctoral candidates and will be in residence in Germany throughout the academic year. During her research stay, Green will investigate pre- and postwar Jewish community records, denunciation and arrest records of the NSDAP, postwar restitution and compensation claims, as well as myriad written and oral testimonies and ego-documents. Green’s doctoral research has been supported by several fellowships and research grants, including a Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference) Graduate Studies Fellowship, a Hadassah-Brandeis Institute research award, a Leo Baeck Institute Fritz Halbers Fellowship, and an EHRI Conny Kristel Fellowship.



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