Nadège Ragaru

Nadege_RagaruNadège Ragaru is CNRS researcher at Sciences Po (CERI, Paris) and teaches the history of socialism and the representation, the commemoration and the remembering of the Holocaust at Sciences Po (Paris & Dijon). She holds a PhD in Political sociology from Sciences Po, Paris, and was formerly Reid Hall Fellow at Columbia University (1999-2000).

Her research centers on the Holocaust in Bulgaria and Macedonia, as well as on the cultural history of socialism in Bulgaria and Macedonia. Her recent publications include: “The Female Body of Jewish Suffering: The Cinematic Recreation of the Holocaust in the Bulgarian-German Co-production “Zvezdi/Sterne/Stars” (1959),” L’Homme. Europäische Zeitschrift für feministische Geschichtswissenschaft, 26 (2), 2015, p.103-117; “ Juger les crimes antisémites avant Nuremberg: l’expérience du Tribunal populaire en Bulgarie (1944-1945),”Histoire@Politique, 26, mai-août 2015, at : www.histoire-politique.fr ; La Shoah en Europe du Sud-Est. Les Juifs dans les territoires sous administration bulgare 1941-1944) (ed. volume), Paris: E-Editions du Mémorial de la Shoah, 2014 ;“Commémorer et diviser en Europe : le 70ème anniversaire du sauvetage et des déportations juives depuis les terres sous administration bulgare,” Revue d’études comparatives Est-Ouest, 65, 3/4, 2014, p. 237-274.

Presented Lecture: Judging Anti-Jewish Crimes before the End of the War: The Bulgarian Experiment (1944-1945)

In December 1944, a Chamber, which was solely dedicated to the prosecution of anti-Jewish crimes during World War II, was established within the Bulgarian People’s Court. Bulgaria was thus amongst the first states in Europe to hold trials with an exclusive focus on anti-Jewish persecutions. A key experiment in the qualification of crimes, the definition of evidence and the establishment of proof, the Bulgarian trials were not insulated from the wider political and social conflicts associated with the ascent to power of the Fatherland Front, the purges in the state apparatus, and the slow abolishment of anti-Jewish measures. Within the framework of the present communication, the trials for anti-Jewish crimes will thus be considered as a stage on which several contenders – the prosecutors, the judges, the lawyers, and the witnesses – fought over the reading of the recent past and the present in the making. Seen from this perspective, the Court offers a lens on the complex renegotiations of the relations between Jews and non-Jews, as well as between communists and Zionists at the end of the war. Ultimately, the speeches of the prosecutors and the judgement of the Court took part in the fashioning of an anti-fascist master narrative about the war that tended to downplay the specificity of the Jewish experiences of the war and that was to exert an enduring influence over the public discourse on the Holocaust in Bulgaria.

Selective List of Publications

  • “The Female Body of Jewish Suffering: The Cinematic Recreation of the Holocaust in the Bulgarian-East German Co-Production “Zvezdi/Sterne” (1959),” L’Homme. Z. F. G. 26, 2 (2015), pp. 103-118.
  • “Juger les crimes antisémites avant Nuremberg: l’expérience du Tribunal populaire en Bulgarie (novembre 1944-avril 1945)”, Histoire@Politique 26, 2015.
  • “La spoliation des biens juifs en Bulgarie pendant la seconde Guerre mondiale : un nouveau chantier historiographique”, Questions de recherche, 2015.
  • “The Liquidation of Jewish Properties in Bitola (1943): Plunder by decree during Bulgarian occupation” (to be published in the proceedings of the conferences on Macedonia’s Jews held in Skopje in December 2014).
  • La Shoah en Europe du Sud-Est. Les Juifs en Bulgarie et dans les territoires sous administration bulgare, 1941-1944 (Paris: E-Editions du Mémorial de la Shoah, 2014, ed.), available at: http://www.memorialdelashoah.org/images/media/PDF/Actes_de_colloques/MShoah_Actes_Colloque_Shoah_Europe_Sud-Est_06-2013.pdf
  • “Ecrire l’histoire de la Shoah en Bulgarie et dans les territoires occupés : esquisse d’un chantier historiographique transnational”, in: La Shoah en Europe du Sud-Est. Les Juifs en Bulgarie et dans les territoires sous administration bulgare (1941-1944) (Paris: Editions du Mémorial de la Shoah, 2014), pp. 9-27.
  • “Nationaliser la Shoah ? Les enjeux identitaires des controverses bulgaro-macédoniennes sur l’histoire”, in: La Shoah en Europe du Sud-Est. Les Juifs en Bulgarie et dans les territoires sous administration bulgare 1941-1944) (Paris: Editions du Mémorial de la Shoah, 2014), pp. 138-161.
  • “Commémorer et diviser en Europe: le 70ème anniversaire du sauvetage et des déportations juives depuis les terres sous administration bulgare”, Revue d’études comparatives Est-Ouest 65, 3/4, 2014, pp. 237-274.
  • “Recension de Rumen Avramov, ‘Sauvetage’ et déchéance. Microéconomie de l’antisémitisme d’Etat”, Revue d’histoire moderne et contemporaine 1, 2015.
  • “La Shoah au cœur des controverses publiques entre la Macédoine et la Bulgarie”, P@gesEurope, 15 April 2013, La Documentation française, accessible at http://www.ladocumentationfrancaise.fr/pages-europe.