This essay assesses a series of art projects, festivals, and institutional spaces acknowledging Poland’s Jewish past that appeared in Poland during its first decade of EU membership. Identifying a recurring practice of making absence present and tangible, or more broadly a concern with Jewish ghosts, the essay examines how contemporary art practices peddle in nostalgia for a Jewish past as a mode of desiring a cosmopolitan European future. As “newly integrated” Europeans, Poles are caught in a double bind: on the one hand, their Jewish ghosts allow them to participate in European postimperial discourses of tolerance and multiculturalism; on the other, they remain haunted, continually eroticized and differentiated from the “real” Europe.

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