About the Fund

The Jacques Rossi Memorial Fund for Gulag Research is named in honor of Jacques Rossi, a Polish-French writer who was arrested in the USSR in 1937 and later wrote about his experiences in the Gulag. Georgetown University provided refuge and hospitality to Jacques Rossi between 1979 and 1985, thus allowing him to complete the testimony of his years of incarceration in his Gulag Handbook: An Encyclopedia Dictionary of Soviet Penitentiary Institutions and Terms Related to the Forced Labor Camps, published first in English and Russian and, later, in French. An acclaimed biography of Jacques Rossi was published in 2002 by Georgetown Professor Emerita of French, Michèle Sarde, based on a lengthy series of the author’s personal interviews with the Gulag survivor. Sarde’s volume was entitled Jacques, le Français [Jack the Frenchman], his moniker in the camps.

The Jacques Rossi Memorial Fund for Gulag Research was launched in spring 2013 with a major international conference at Georgetown, “The Soviet Gulag: New Research and New Interpretations,” co-sponsored by the Georgetown-based journal, Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History. Since 2013, the Rossi Fund has allocated significant funding to student research at all levels relating to any topic concerning the Gulag.

The Jacques Rossi Memorial Fund for Gulag Research is made possible by a generous gift from Elisabeth Salina Amorini, who met Michèle Sarde after reading her biography of Rossi. Ms. Salina Amorini received her law degree from the Geneva University in 1976. From 1987 until 1998 she was Chairman of SGS Société Générale de Surveillance S.A., a public company founded by her Russian-born grandfather, Jacques Salmanowitz. Since its inception the firm has held extensive business interests in Eastern Europe. During World War II, Jacques Salmanowitz was actively involved in helping victims of Nazi persecution.

Director: Michael David-Fox
Assistant Director: Mikhail Nemtsev
Faculty Advisor: Deborah Lesko Baker

For more information, contact Prof. Michael David-Fox.