Born 6 August 1944, son of Jewish refugees from Vienna who had fled to London in 1938.
Educated at Harrow School and Oxford University, B.A. in Modern Languages (German and French), 1962-65, D.Phil., 1968-71.
Lectured in German at the University of Reading, 1971-74, University of Bristol, 1974-93, and University of Westminster, 1993-96. Published widely on modern German literature in historical context, with special focus on the period 1918-1933, including Cockpit of Ideologies: The Literature and Political History of the Weimar Republic (1995).
1996- Historical Consultant to the Association of Jewish Refugees (AJR), London.
1996- Founding Committee Member and till 2007 Hon. Secretary of Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies, Institute of Modern Languages Research, University of London. From 2007 till 2012 Hon. Treasurer, and from 2012 Chair of the London committee of the Research Centre.
1999- Member of editorial board of the Yearbook of the Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies. Acted as Editor or Co-editor for several volumes.
1999, 2002, 2005 Organised triennial conferences of Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies (on refugees from Hitler in Britain, German-language broadcasting at the BBC, and refugees from Austria in Britain after 1938).
2002 Co-organiser (with Dr Bea Lewkowicz) of exhibition Continental Britons at Jewish Museum, London, to mark sixtieth anniversary of founding of the AJR.
2003-08 Co-director (with Dr Bea Lewkowicz) of filmed interviews project Refugee Voices: The AJR Audio-Visual Testimony Archive.
2006- Editor of AJR Journal, monthly magazine of the AJR.
27 August 2008 Appeared as historical expert on BBC TV’s Who Do You Think You Are? (Jerry Springer), http://www.bbc.co.uk/whodoyouthinkyouare/new-stories/jerry-springer/how-we-did-it_1.shtml.
18 June 2009 Invited to speak on ‘The Association of Jewish Refugees and the Wiener Library’ at workshop to mark the launch of Refugee Voices, Wiener Library, London.
17 September 2009 Gave opening keynote paper at conference ‘The Kindertransports 1938/9: Seventy Years on’, Institute of Germanic & Romance Studies (now Institute for Modern Languages Research), University of London.
5 November 2009 Invited to speak on ‘The Jewish Refugees from Hitler in Britain, 1933-2009’ at the Institute for Jewish Studies, University of Antwerp.
2009-2011 Co-director (with Dr Bea Lewkowicz) of project Double Exposure: Jewish Refugees from Austria in Britain, consisting of a film, an exhibition (shown at the Austrian Cultural Forum, London, the Literaturhaus, Vienna, and the German Historical Institute, London), and a book, Stimmen der Flucht: Österreichische Emigration nach Großbritannien ab 1938.
4 January 2012 Gave paper ‘“Britain’s New Citizens”: The settlement of the Jews from Germany and Austria in Britain after 1945’ at conference ‘Beyond Camps and Forced Labour: Current International Research on Survivors of Nazi Persecution’, Imperial War Museum, 4 – 6 January 2012.
8 March 2012 Appeared in programme on BBC TV ‘Nazi persecution saw Jews flee abroad as servants’, http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-16942741 (about Jewish refugees admitted to Britain on domestic service permits).
15 March 2012 Gave paper on Jewish refugee academics at workshop on ‘Oxford Wartime Academics in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences’, Corpus Christi College, Oxford, publication forthcoming.
2 April 2012 Invited to give the Halberstam Memorial Lecture on ‘The German-Jewish Refugees from Hitler in Britain and the Association of Jewish Refugees’ at the Society for Jewish Study, London.
12 September 2012 Gave opening paper ‘Setting the Scene: Viennese Jewry before 1938’ at two-day seminar ‘German and Austrian Jewish Refugees: Their Impact and Legacy’, London Jewish Cultural Centre.
2 October 2012 Appeared as historical expert in How We Won the War, BBC 2 TV, in section on Kindertransport children.
14 March 2013 Gave paper ‘Neue Ansätze jenseits des Ärmelkanals: The Interviews with Former Austrians in the Collection Refugee Voices’, at conference ‘Exilforschung zu Österreich: Leistungen, Defizite & Perspektiven’, 12-14 March 2013, Vienna, publication forthcoming.
23 March 2013 Gave paper ‘Dinge der Vergessenheit: Der Fall eines unbekannten jüdischen Emigranten’ at conference ‘Dinge des Exils: Jahrestagung der Gesellschaft für Exilforschung’, 21-24 March 2013, Hamburg.
22 April 2013 Appeared as historical expert in BBC Radio 4 programme ‘Ode to Finchleystrasse’ (on Austrian-Jewish refugees around London’s Finchley Road), in series Journeys down My Street.
20 October 2013 Took part in panel discussion on ‘Bloomsbury, A History of Refuge’, Senate House, University of London, as part of Bloomsbury Festival 2013.
10 November 2013 Guest speaker at annual event of West Midlands branch of World Jewish Relief, Birmingham.
28 March 2014 Chaired opening session of ‘ Kometen des Geldes: Ökonomie und Exil’, annual conference of Gesellschaft für Exilforschung (Society for Exile Studies), Literaturhaus, Vienna, 28-30 March 2014.
7 April 2014 Lectured to Society for Jewish Study, London, on ‘The Renaissance of Jewish Culture in Vienna in the Nineteenth Century’.
Monthly front-page articles in the AJR Journal, January 2006-
‘Dinge der Vergessenheit: Der Fall eines unbekannten jüdischen Flüchtlings’, Exilforschung, 31 (2013), 236-249.
‘Lutz Weltmann, Theatre Critic and Cultural Mediator in the AJR Information’, in German-speaking Exiles in the Performing Arts in Britain after 1933: Yearbook of the Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies, 14 (2013), 169-184.
‘The Kindertransports: An Introduction’, Yearbook of the Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies, 13 (2012), 1-14.
Stimmen der Flucht: Österreichische Emigration nach Großbritannien ab 1938 (Vienna: Czernin Verlag, 2011).
Jewish Refugees from Germany and Austria in Britain, 1933-1970: Their Image in the ‘Association of Jewish Refugees Information’ (London/Portland, OR: Vallentine Mitchell, 2010).
‘German-Jewish Refugees in the British Forces and the Re-education of German Prisoners of War in Britain: The Case of Herbert Sulzbach’, Angermion, 2 (2009), 143-157.
‘The Politics of the Austrian Centre’, in Marietta Bearman, Charmian Brinson, Richard Dove, Anthony Grenville, Jennifer Taylor, Out of Austria: The Austrian Centre in London in World War II (London/New York: I.B. Tauris, 2008), pp. 22-52.
‘The Association of Jewish Refugees’, in ‘I didn’t want to float; I wanted to belong to something’. Refugee Organizations in Britain 1933-1945: Yearbook of the Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies, 10 (2008), 89-111.
‘“Linke Leute von rechts”: Thomas Mann’s Naphta and the Ideological Confluence of Radical Right and Radical Left in the Early Years of the Weimar Republic’, in Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain: A Casebook, ed. by Hans Rudolf Vaget (Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press, 2008), pp. 143-170 (reprint).
‘The Legacy of Classical Humanism among the Jews from Germany and Austria after 1945’, Publications of the English Goethe Society, 74 (2005), 37-50.
‘Zeit der Prüfung, Zeit der Taten, Zeit des Triumphes und der Illusionen: Die politische Tätigkeit des Austrian Centre’, in Marietta Bearman, Charmian Brinson, Richard Dove, Anthony Grenville, Jennifer Taylor, Wien – London, hin und retour: Das Austrian Centre in London 1939 bis 1947 (Vienna: Czernin Verlag, 2004), pp. 29-61.
Chapter 1: ‘Family Backgrounds before Emigration’, Chapter 2: ‘Culture, Education, Politics before Emigration’, Chapter 7: ‘Religion’, in Changing Countries: The Experience and Achievement of German-speaking Exiles from Hitler in Britain from 1933 to Today, edited by Marian Malet and Anthony Grenville (London: Libris, 2002), pp. 1-17, 18-44, 161-183.
Continental Britons: Jewish Refugees from Nazi Europe (London: Association of Jewish Refugees, 2002) (short history of the refugees from Central Europe to accompany the exhibition of the same name).
‘The Integration of Aliens: The Early Years of the Association of Jewish Refugees Information, 1946-50’, Yearbook of the Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies, 1 (1999), 1-23.
‘The Earliest Reception of the Holocaust: Ernst Sommer’s Wartime Novel Die Revolte der Heiligen’, German Life and Letters, 51 (1998) (Exile Studies Special Number), 250-265. Reprinted in The Legacy of Exile: Lives, Letters, Literature, edited by Deborah Vietor-Engländer (Oxford: Blackwell, 1998), pp. 100-115.
‘Anna Seghers Confronts the Holocaust: The Jewish Dimension to Der Ausflug der toten Mädchen’, in Anna Seghers in Perspective, edited by Ian Wallace (German Monitor No. 43), (Amsterdam and Atlanta, GA: Rodopi, 1998), pp. 117-133.