Ion C. Butnaru and the Romanian Holocaust


This small exhibition paid tribute to the life of Romanian journalist Ion C. Butnaru and his work documenting the Holocaust as it affected those in his country. When war broke out in 1939, Butnaru was drafted into the Romanian Army. Due to anti-Jewish sentiment that began building, he was expelled from the army and reassigned to a labor battalion and sent all over Romania as a forced laborer. He was liberated by the Russian Army in 1944. Having survived the camps and the genocide that followed, Butnaru became a journalist, author, and book reviewer for several prominent newspapers and magazines..

In 1976, Butnaru fled the deepening repression of the Romanian government for Boston. At Boston University, he frequently lectured on the Holocaust and the arts while writing two books for an American audience: The Silent Holocaust (1992) and Waiting for Jerusalem (1993). Ion C. Butnaru passed away July 21, 1995. His papers are part of the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center..

On view, along with some photographs, is a copy of his book, The Silent Holocaust, along with a draft of a letter to Elie Wiesel, reporting on his unsuccessful attempts to engage Congress in a commemoration of the 45th anniversary of the Pogroms and deportation of Romanian Jews that occurred in 1941. He turns to Wiesel for help.

This exhibition is no longer on view.

Jacques Pepin