The Romanian Orthodox Church and the Holocaust
Studies in Antisemitism
Published by: Indiana University Press
254 pages, 152.00 x 229.00 mm, 14 b&w illus.
- ISBN: 9780253029560
- Published: September 2017
In 1930, about 750,000 Jews called Romania home. At the end of World War II, approximately half of them survived. Only recently, after the fall of Communism, are details of the history of the Holocaust in Romania coming to light. Ion Popa explores this history by scrutinizing the role of the Romanian Orthodox Church from 1938 to the present day. Popa unveils and questions whitewashing myths that covered up the role of the church in supporting official antisemitic policies of the Romanian government. He analyzes the church's relationship with the Jewish community in Romania, with Judaism, and with the state of Israel, as well as the extent to which the church recognizes its part in the persecution and destruction of Romanian Jews. Popa's highly original analysis illuminates how the church responded to accusations regarding its involvement in the Holocaust, the part it played in buttressing the wall of Holocaust denial, and how Holocaust memory has been shaped in Romania today.
List of Abbreviations
1. A dangerous "symphonia": the church-state relationship and its impact on the Jewish Community of Romania before 22 June 1941
2. Perpetrator, Bystander or Saviour? The Romanian Orthodox Church and the Holocaust (1941-1944)
3. The Jewish Community of Romania and the Romanian Orthodox Church in the aftermath of the Holocaust (1945-1948)
4. Cleansing the past, rewriting history: The Romanian Orthodox Church from active involvement in the Holocaust to the whitewashing process
5. Forgetting the truth, forgetting the dead: the use of the Holocaust for political and religious agendas and the persistence of anti-Semitism (1945-1948)
6. Behind religious harmony: The Romanian Orthodox Church and the Jewish Community during the communist era (1948-1989)
7. The Romanian Orthodox Church, Holocaust memory and anti-Semitism during the communist era (1948-1989)
8. Nationalism, anti-Semitism and the Romanian Orthodox Church after 1989: Understanding the context of Holocaust memory's re-emergence in post-communist Romania
9. The Romanian Orthodox Church and Holocaust memory after 1989
Ion Popa's book makes a welcome contribution to the debate on the Holocaust in Romania by focusing on the largest religious confession, the Romanian Orthodox Church.~Journal of Orthodox Christian Studies
Popa's study is a first substantial and therefore crucial contribution to an important facet of the Holocaust in Romania. He uses solid and broad basis of pirmary and secondary sources and careful annotations.~Simon Geissbuhler, Jahrbücher für Geschichte Osteuropas – Redaktion
The Romanian Orthodox Church and the Holocaustis an important book. Its value is found in the fact that it exposes the extent to which the thread of continuity that runs through Romanian Christian nationalist discourse from the 1930s and 1940s, through the communist period, all the way to the present, is sustained by a systematic and organised process of forgetting. It also demonstrates how carefully orchestrated silence and selective remembering of the national past are instrumental in sustaining antisemitic ideas and attitudes in contemporary eastern European society.
The present book is an important addition to the study of the Holocaust in Romania and also fills a major gap in scholarship on the Romanian Orthodox Church, the country's largest religious denomination.~Reading Religion
Popa has brought to light an impressive volume of archival data unavailable to researchers and the general public until recently.~Holocaust and Genocide Studies
This study presents a wealth of interesting material and the verve and consistency with which the argument is presented makes for a convincing and readable account. As the first exploration of its kind on this politically, socially, and culturally relevant and historically significant subject for an English-speaking readership, it is unquestionably an important contribution to scholarly literature.~H-Nationalism