The ambivalent exception: American occupation policy in postwar Germany and the formation of Jewish refugee spaces

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article looks at the history of Jewish refugees in Germany and their place in the formation of the postwar refugee regime from the perspective of space. Focusing on the US occupation zone, it examines the spatial practices of refugee management employed by the occupation authorities and considers how Jewish 'displaced persons' (DPs) themselves related to postwar German space. Fundamental policy contradictions structured the lives of DPs in American-occupied Germany. Although the US occupation authorities preferred to segregate displaced persons in camps, they also felt the need to demonstrate that they were not reproducing the Nazi camp regime. These competing objectives led to spatial 'indeterminacy' inside and outside the camps. A fundamental ambivalence also structured Jewish spatial practices. Jewish refugees desired the protection and separation that camps afforded, but they also wanted access to German space. These competing desires framed the emergence of Jewish 'spaces of exception' in the DP camps and in what was officially considered 'Germany'.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberfes018
Pages (from-to)452-473
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Refugee Studies
Volume25
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2012

Fingerprint

occupation policy
displaced person
refugee
occupation
ambivalence
regime
camp
policy
history
management

Keywords

  • 'State of exception'
  • Displaced persons
  • Germany
  • Jewish refugees
  • Space

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Political Science and International Relations

Cite this

The ambivalent exception : American occupation policy in postwar Germany and the formation of Jewish refugee spaces. / Holian, Anna.

In: Journal of Refugee Studies, Vol. 25, No. 3, fes018, 09.2012, p. 452-473.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{0876f624b6a54173be87309d56806f36,
title = "The ambivalent exception: American occupation policy in postwar Germany and the formation of Jewish refugee spaces",
abstract = "This article looks at the history of Jewish refugees in Germany and their place in the formation of the postwar refugee regime from the perspective of space. Focusing on the US occupation zone, it examines the spatial practices of refugee management employed by the occupation authorities and considers how Jewish 'displaced persons' (DPs) themselves related to postwar German space. Fundamental policy contradictions structured the lives of DPs in American-occupied Germany. Although the US occupation authorities preferred to segregate displaced persons in camps, they also felt the need to demonstrate that they were not reproducing the Nazi camp regime. These competing objectives led to spatial 'indeterminacy' inside and outside the camps. A fundamental ambivalence also structured Jewish spatial practices. Jewish refugees desired the protection and separation that camps afforded, but they also wanted access to German space. These competing desires framed the emergence of Jewish 'spaces of exception' in the DP camps and in what was officially considered 'Germany'.",
keywords = "'State of exception', Displaced persons, Germany, Jewish refugees, Space",
author = "Anna Holian",
year = "2012",
month = "9",
doi = "10.1093/jrs/fes018",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "25",
pages = "452--473",
journal = "Journal of Refugee Studies",
issn = "0951-6328",
publisher = "Oxford University Press",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The ambivalent exception

T2 - American occupation policy in postwar Germany and the formation of Jewish refugee spaces

AU - Holian, Anna

PY - 2012/9

Y1 - 2012/9

N2 - This article looks at the history of Jewish refugees in Germany and their place in the formation of the postwar refugee regime from the perspective of space. Focusing on the US occupation zone, it examines the spatial practices of refugee management employed by the occupation authorities and considers how Jewish 'displaced persons' (DPs) themselves related to postwar German space. Fundamental policy contradictions structured the lives of DPs in American-occupied Germany. Although the US occupation authorities preferred to segregate displaced persons in camps, they also felt the need to demonstrate that they were not reproducing the Nazi camp regime. These competing objectives led to spatial 'indeterminacy' inside and outside the camps. A fundamental ambivalence also structured Jewish spatial practices. Jewish refugees desired the protection and separation that camps afforded, but they also wanted access to German space. These competing desires framed the emergence of Jewish 'spaces of exception' in the DP camps and in what was officially considered 'Germany'.

AB - This article looks at the history of Jewish refugees in Germany and their place in the formation of the postwar refugee regime from the perspective of space. Focusing on the US occupation zone, it examines the spatial practices of refugee management employed by the occupation authorities and considers how Jewish 'displaced persons' (DPs) themselves related to postwar German space. Fundamental policy contradictions structured the lives of DPs in American-occupied Germany. Although the US occupation authorities preferred to segregate displaced persons in camps, they also felt the need to demonstrate that they were not reproducing the Nazi camp regime. These competing objectives led to spatial 'indeterminacy' inside and outside the camps. A fundamental ambivalence also structured Jewish spatial practices. Jewish refugees desired the protection and separation that camps afforded, but they also wanted access to German space. These competing desires framed the emergence of Jewish 'spaces of exception' in the DP camps and in what was officially considered 'Germany'.

KW - 'State of exception'

KW - Displaced persons

KW - Germany

KW - Jewish refugees

KW - Space

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84866358071&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84866358071&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1093/jrs/fes018

DO - 10.1093/jrs/fes018

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84866358071

VL - 25

SP - 452

EP - 473

JO - Journal of Refugee Studies

JF - Journal of Refugee Studies

SN - 0951-6328

IS - 3

M1 - fes018

ER -