David Talbot: Exhibit about art, engineering, not Nazi history

January 21, 2014 

Peter Coclanis misinformed us in his Jan. 19 Point of View about the Porsche exhibit at N.C. Museum of Art. This was an art and engineering exhibit, and there was a series of lectures by Konrad Jarausch, also a UNC professor. This was one of the reasons I attended the exhibit Nov. 24.

Jarausch eloquently presented slides of the Porsche history and mentioned Ferdinand Porsche’s Nazi connections and that he served jail time after the war. He presented the history appropriately in connection with the exhibit without inflaming Nazi history to the many different nationalities I observed in the lecture room. The public was also invited to ask questions after his presentation. No one asked a question about Nazi history; that’s not what this exhibit was about!

This exhibit was a great success for the museum with record attendance. This was not an excuse for a witch hunt by a history professor to point fingers about Nazi history who obviously did not check the museum calendar, where he could see a UNC history professor of European civilization did provide the lecture or two he claims was not provided.

David Talbot


Editor’s note: The Point of View “Insensitivity on display” called for “a lecture or two at the museum by one or another of the Triangle’s many eminent scholars of Germany” when in fact there was a lecture at the museum and two in other N.C. cities.

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