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The University of Southampton
The Parkes Institute

James Parkes and the age of intolerance exhibition

Published: 6 February 2019
James Parkes Exhibition

This week the University of Southampton is hosting an exhibition about the life of Reverend Dr James Parkes (1896–1981). Parkes was one of the most remarkable figures within twentieth-century Christianity. Yet since his death in 1981, he has largely been forgotten by the church, by Jews, and by British society as a whole.

This exhibition explores Parkes’ lifework as a tireless fighter against antisemitism in all forms, including from within Christianity. In the 1930s Parkes helped to rescue Jewish refugees and he campaigned for the Jews of Europe during the Holocaust. During the Second World War, Parkes helped found the Council of Christians and Jews and worked throughout his career to promote religious tolerance and mutual respect among those of all faiths and none.

Parkes authored more than 400 texts during his lifetime. He donated his library and personal papers to the University of Southampton in 1964. These materials formed the foundation for what later became the Parkes Institute, the world’s oldest and most wide-ranging centre for the study of Jewish/non-Jewish relations across the ages. The exhibition draws on documents and photographs from the University’s Special Collections to examine the life of James Parkes and reflect on his legacy for us today.

The exhibition has been curated by Chad McDonald , who is currently completing a PhD examining how the Holocaust has been remembered in Britain. This exhibition has been generously funded by the South, West and Wales Doctoral Training Partnership (Arts and Humanities Research Council).

The exhibition is being shown in the North Corridor on Avenue Campus until Friday 8 February at 4pm. It is free and open to the public

Funded by SWWDTP and AHRC
Funded by SWWDTP and AHRC
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