Conference: Italy’s Decade of War: 1935-45 in International Perspective

6-7 September 2016, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow

Keynote Speakers:
Professor MacGregor Knox, LSE
Professor Nicola Labanca, Università degli Studi di Siena

Registration now open

To register for the conference, please visit the online shop.

From the invasion of Abyssinia to the end of World War Two, Italy experienced a decade of war. This conference aims to re-evaluate the history of the Italian experience during this ten-year period with a unifying perspective that places the Italian Fascist regime and its foreign and military enterprises in an entirely internationalised framework of analysis. It will bring an international focus upon the Italian role in the break-down of the international system and appeasement, and will analyse the consequences of Italian militarism on a global scale. It will explore comparative and transnational histories of the Italian occupations of France, the Balkans, Greece, and Albania, as well as the Allied occupation of Italy following the defeat. The conference will seek to place particular emphasis upon the significance of the Mediterranean region in the wider history of the Second World War, exploring the broader implications of Italy’s actions in Africa and the Middle East. It will also look at Italian diplomatic, military and economic relations with Britain, the United States, and Nazi Germany, as well as those with other states such as Vichy France and Spain.

This conference aims to bring together scholars working in the fields of military, political, diplomatic, international, colonial, transnational, and comparative history, and encourages inter-disciplinary contributions. The conference organisers aim to publish selected papers in an edited volume and a journal special issue.

Conference organisers: Dr Karine Varley (University of Strathclyde) Dr Marco Maria Aterrano (Università degli Studi di Napoli ‘Federico II’).
Contact Email:
Twitter: #ItalyDecadeWar


Exhibition in Focus: The Channel Islands, Nazi persecution and the Holocaust

Thursday 9 Jun 2016, 6pm-8pm

6 – 6:30 pm: Exhibition viewing
6:30 – 8:00 pm: Lecture and discussion

The history of Nazi persecution in the Channel Islands during the German occupation of 1940-1945 has long been marginalised, even within the islands themselves. No ‘roll of honour’ was ever kept of those who were sent to prisons and concentration camps on the continent for acts of resistance. The exact numbers of those sent away are still not known. The memory of many of these people was not held in high esteem in the decades after the war. Discussion of the Jews deported from the Channel Islands was an even more delicate subject for discussion, as their story potentially involved the tabooed c-word (collaboration). This lecture sheds light on the silence surrounding victims of Nazism in the Channel Islands and gives voice to some of their extraordinary stories.

This lecture is part of a series of programming designed to highlight aspects of the exhibition, Dilemmas, Choices, Responses: Britain and the Holocaust, co-curated by the Holocaust Educational Trust’s Regional Ambassadors and the Wiener Library. Among other topics, the exhibition includes documents and pamphlets on Nazi persecution in the Channel Islands. Participants will have the opportunity to view the exhibition prior to the lecture.

Dr Gilly Carr is a Senior Lecturer in Archaeology at the University of Cambridge, where she is also a Fellow and Director of Studies at St Catharine’s College. Her research focuses on victims of Nazism in the Channel Islands, post-conflict heritage studies, and conflict archaeology. She is the author of over 50 publications. Recent publications include Protest, Defiance and Resistance in the Channel Islands: German Occupation 1940-1945 (Bloomsbury 2014, with Paul Sanders and Louise Willmot) and Legacies of Occupation: Heritage, memory and archaeology in the Channel Islands (Springer 2014). She has recently made a BBC documentary about her research which will be screened in May 2016.

Admission is free but booking is essential as space is limited.

Contact Info:
The Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide
+44 (0)20 7636 7247
29 Russell Square, London, WC1B 5DP
Contact Email:

Fraenkel Prize Lecture: Wounded minds: Experiencing the violence of the Nazi New Order in Yugoslavia

Location: The Wiener Library, 29 Russell Square, London, WC1B 5DP
Date: April 27, 2016

In WWII, death and violence permeated all aspects of everyday lives of ordinary people in Eastern Europe. Moreover, almost entire populations were drawn into fierce and uncompromising political and ideological conflicts, and many ended up being more than mere victims or observers: they themselves became perpetrators or facilitators of violence, often to protect their own lives but also to gain various benefits. Yugoslavia in particular saw a gradual culmination of a complex and brutal civil war, which ultimately killed more civilians than did the foreign occupying armies. This lecture will tell a story of the tremendous impact of such pervasive and multi-layered political violence, and will look at ordinary citizens’ attempts to negotiate these extraordinary wartime political pressures. It proposes to use Yugoslav psychiatric case files as unique windows into this harrowing history in order to gain an original perspective on the effects of wartime violence and occupation through the history of psychiatry, mental illness and personal experience. By looking at patient files as historical sources, it explores the socio-cultural history of wartime through the eyes of (mostly lower-class) psychiatric patients. Moreover, the experiences of observing, suffering and committing political violence critically affected the understanding of human psychology, pathology and normality in WWII and post-war Balkans and Europe. The lecture traces the formation and re-definition of psychiatric concepts, categories and practices in the context of extreme violence, Nazi occupation and post-war socialist revolution. It shows how such brutal external conditions and unprecedented anti-civilian violence transformed psychiatric and scientific paradigms, and changed psychiatric and broader public evaluations of the human psyche.

Ana Antic is a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology at Birkbeck. She is a social and cultural historian of twentieth-century Europe, with a special interest in the history of violence, everyday life and psychiatry. Her first manuscript, Therapeutic fascism: Experiencing the violence of the Nazi New Order in Yugoslavia, is forthcoming with OUP. Dr Antic is the joint winner of the 2015 Fraenkel Prize.

Admission is free but booking is required as space is limited. To book tickets please visit our website at

Contact Info:
The Wiener Library for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide
29 Russell Square
+44 (0) 20 7636 7247
Contact Email: