Jüdische Kinder in Erez Israel, a collection of twenty-one photographs of adorable Jewish children in Mandatory Palestine, was the last overtly Jewish-themed photobook published in Germany before the Holocaust. Yet its propaganda mission transcended its diminutive size and surface superficiality. This talk examines how this photobook creates an allegory of Jewish vulnerability by eliciting responses associated with the minor aesthetic category of ‘cuteness.’ In so doing, it broadens our understanding of how photobooks helped expand the visual lexicon and aesthetic strategies central to Jewish cultural and political regeneration.
Daniel H. Magilow is Professor of German at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and Co-Editor-in-Chief of Holocaust and Genocide Studies. His research centers on photography and its intersections with Holocaust Studies, Weimar Germany, and postwar memory. He has authored and edited six books, including The Photography of Crisis: The Photo Essays of Weimar Germany and Holocaust Representations in History: An Introduction.