The myriad debates on restitution and memory, which have been going on in Europe for decades, indicate that World War II never ended. It is still very much with us, paradoxically re-invoked by the events of 1989/90 and the expansion of Europe to the east in the aftermath of the collapse of communism and economic globalization. The growing privatization and reprivatization in Eastern Europe revive pre-war memories that lay buried under the blanket of collectivization and nationalization of property after 1945. World War II did not only result in the death and destruction on a large scale but also in an a far-reaching revolution of existing property relations. This volume offers an assessment of the problematic of restitution and its close interconnection with the discourses of memory that have recently emerged.
Dan Diner is Professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Director of the Simon Dubnow Institute for Jewish History and Culture at Leipzig University. His publications include Beyond the Conceivable. Studies on Germany, Nazism and the Holocaust (University of California Press, 2000) and Versiegelte Zeit. Uber den Stillstand der islamischen Welt (Propylaen). Gotthard Wunberg is Director of the Internationales Forschungszentrum Kulturwissenschaften Wien (IFK), Austria. His publications include Studien zur Literatur der Moderne (2001).