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An Effort to Focus on Long Overlooked Roma Suffering in the Holocaust

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Kocze said, “The voice of the Roma is very much missing from the mainstream historical narrative.” “Their testimony has been discredited, or vilified, and their credibility has been called into question. These people don’t count, they don’t matter, nobody cares about them, it’s hard to even remember them as mere human beings.”

This was the reason why Katerina Kapkova, a researcher at the Institute of Contemporary History Prague, initiated the database of evidence as a project of the Prague Forum for Romantic History. He said, before starting the project eight years ago, “there was no such database or any other place where the Romani evidence was collected.”

Slovak-born Roma historian Renata Bercova, who also played a key role in developing the website, said that Romani evidence was previously difficult to find in the scattered archives. The database brings them to a central point that provides information about the Nazi persecution of Roma.

“You can see the trajectory of the survivor’s experience,” Barkiova said. “You can compare the evidence, and you can find the core of the experience in one place.”

Kapkova explained, Romani people were generally portrayed as uniformly nomadic, poor and unwilling to work, partly due to the influence of Nazi propaganda that dehumanized them, portraying them as criminals or “asocial”. Portrayed as. As a result, many failed to recognize their arrest, imprisonment, and execution as a process of genocide.

“Roma and Sinti were imprisoned and murdered on the basis of race, on racial grounds,” Kapkova said. But the Nazis often said it was due to “alleged criminal activities, or alleged refusal to work.”

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