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Centre de Documentation Juive Contem-Poraine (CDJC)


CENTRE DE DOCUMENTATION JUIVE CONTEM-PORAINE (cdjc ), "Jewish Contemporary Documentation Center," a French Jewish organization clandestinely created in Grenoble in 1943, during the German occupation, in order to collect documentation on the Holocaust. Its founder, Isaac *Schneersohn, organized a committee which enlisted the cooperation of several Jewish organizations, and a group of scholars immediately set to work to collect and preserve documents. Their work carried the death penalty, and activity was necessarily sporadic as a result. In 1944, after the liberation of France, the cdjc was transferred to Paris, and from 1956 was located in a building in the Marais housing the memorial to the Unknown Jewish Martyr. In 2004, the building was renovated and expanded to house the Centre's growing archival collection and to enable it to mount exhibits and to hold conferences. The cdjc has numerous collections of documents from the French Gestapo, the German Embassy in Paris, the German Supreme Military Command in France, and the French Commissariat Général aux Questions Juives. It also possesses vast collections of documents gathered by the Allied authorities in Nuremberg, including original documentation on the activities of Alfred *Rosenberg; proceedings of the trials of Nazi war criminals in France, Germany, and elsewhere; and collections of photographs. Two annotated inventories of the cdjc collections have appeared – the Rosenberg Collection by J. Billig (Alfred Rosenberg dans l'action idéologique, politique et administrative du Reich hitlérien, 1963) and the German Authorities Collection by L. Steinberg (Les autorités allemandes en France occupée; vol. 1, 1963, vol. 2, 1966). The c.d.j.c. has a specialized library of over 50,000 volumes, while its archives contain close to a million documents. The Centre also houses a collection of survivor testimonies, a film archive, and an extensive photograph collection. The cdjc has published over 50 volumes, generally based upon the Centre's archival material. Of particular importance are the three volumes on the Commissariat Général aux Questions Juives (1955–57) by J. Billig and others. The Centre has also published catalogues from its many exhibits on Holocaust-related topics, as well as the proceedings of conferences that it has sponsored. The cdjc publishes a semi-annual journal entitled La Revue de l'histoire de la Shoah, which contains articles and documents on the Holocaust. It also concerns itself with topical matters connected with the Nazi period, such as the fight against racism, Holocaust denial, the punishment of war criminals and their assistants, and the compensation of victims by the German Federal Republic. The Centre has recently created a multimedia encyclopedia on the Shoah, which is available on the Internet. It has been one of the recipients of substantial financial aid from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (later the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture).


Ten Years Existence of the Jewish Contemporary Documentation Center 1943–1953 (1953); Le Monde Juif, vols. 7 (1953) and 18 (1963). website:

[Michel Mazor /

David Weinberg (2nd ed.)]

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