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The Belgian Communist Party and the Spanish Civil War



Number interviews:


ndl: 34

fra: 31

eng: 2

onbekend: 1

Transcriptions: partly

Original carriers: audiotapes, audiocassettes and minidiscs

Current files: mp3; wav; flac

Accessibility: in the reading room

Obligatory registration as reader of the General State Archives and State Archives in the Provinces.

A historian from Ghent University, Rudi Van Doorslaer wrote a doctoral thesis entitled “Children of the Ghetto. Jewish Revolutionaries in Belgium, 1925-1940”, submitted in 1990. From 1977 to 1980, he worked as a temporary attaché at CegeSoma, before being hired as a permanent researcher in 1985. For two years, he directed a research project on the Commission for the Study of Jewish Property under the Prime Minister’s Office. From 1996 to 2005, he was editor-in-chief of Cahiers d’histoire du temps présent. He has published in the domains of Jewish history, migration, communism and anti-communism, the Spanish War and other topics related to the Second World War. He left CegeSoma in 2016.

The interviews conducted by Rudi Van Doorslaer mainly concern the Belgian Communist Party. In particular, he interviewed several witnesses who had been active in the PCB during the Second World War in various Belgian cities (Antwerp, Kortrijk, Brussels, Aalst,…), but also in the context of the Spanish Civil War. He was committed to gaining a better understanding of the structure of the party. The interviews were conducted in two stages. The first interviews took place at the end of the 1970s, between 1976 and 1979. They mainly concern the PCB. Then, from 1983 to 1989, he was still interested in the PCB, but his emphasis was on its links to the Spanish Civil War.

Moreover, there are several interviews with Jewish refugees carried out in order to deepen knowledge of Jewish history.