Department of Languages and Literatures

Perpetrator Representation in Claude Lanzmann's Shoah and its Outtakes

event flyerIn this moderated discussion, Professor Erin McGlothlin will explore part of Claude Lanzmann’s monumental documentary Shoah (1985), a nine- and-a-half-hour film that features interviews Lanzmann conducted with Holocaust survivors, witnesses, and perpetrators. McGlothlin will focus on one of Lanzmann’s most fascinating (and most troubling) interviews in Shoah, namely the director’s dialogue with Franz Suchomel, a former guard of the Treblinka killing center. Based on her recent research, McGlothlin will discuss not only the moments of the Suchomel interview that appear in Shoah, but also sections of the hundreds of hours of the film’s outtake footage that has been restored and digitized by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC and Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Israel. By carefully comparing the outtakes of Lanzmann’s interview with Suchomel with the sequences in Shoah that feature his testimony, McGlothlin is able to reconstruct in minute detail how the film director shaped the testimony of the apparently unrepentant and even gleeful former perpetrator whom we encounter in the finished film.

Virtual Lecture Program

Monday, October 11, 2021 7:00-8:00 PM CDT

Registration Required (click to register)


This program is made possible by the Campus Outreach Lecture Program of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust  Studies, and through the generosity of the Curt C. and Else Silberman Foundation, supporting programs in higher education that promote, protect, and strengthen Jewish values in democracy, human rights, ethical leadership, and cultural pluralism.

Presented in partnership with the UNI Center for Holocaust & Genocide Education, the Department of Languages & Literatures, and the College of Humanities, Arts & Sciences.