Holocaust Living History Workshop Kicks off 2015-16 Series with “Holocaust Journeys”

Posted On: October 7, 2015

For the eighth consecutive year, the University of California, San Diego Holocaust Living History Workshop (HLWH) will host a series of educational events to broaden understanding of the past, foster tolerance, and preserve the memory of victims and survivors of the Holocaust. Co-sponsored by the UC San Diego Library and the UC San Diego Jewish Studies Program, the HLHW will present two fall lectures in its 2015-16 “Holocaust Journeys” series.

Interested members of the public and campus community are invited to attend the events where they will hear from and meet with local Holocaust survivors, witnesses, relatives, and scholars as they share their personal stories and memories. Guests will also have the opportunity to learn more about the Visual History Archive, the world’s largest compilation of Holocaust video testimony. All events, which are free and open to the public, are held on the UC San Diego campus in Geisel Library’s Seuss Room from 5 to 7 p.m., with some exceptions (as noted). Refreshments will be served.

October 14The Mitzvah Project with Roger Grunwald 2015-16_HLHW1

The first event in the fall series will be held on Wednesday, October 14, featuring Roger Grunwald, a graduate of UC Berkeley and the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. The Mitzvah (“The Good Deed”) is a one-person play that dramatically explores the experience of the many thousands of “Mischlinge” (German men with one or two Jewish grandparents) who served in the Wehrmacht during WWII. A creation of Roger Grunwald and co-author Annie McGreevey, it is followed by a history lesson and a conversation with the audience in one engaging performance. Grunwald has been a professional performing artist for over thirty years. The Mitzvah Project is an homage to his mother who survived Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen.

November 4The Holocaust in Comparative Perspective with Norman Naimark

The Wednesday, November 4 workshop will feature American historian and author, naimark_normanNorman Naimark, who provides a comparative perspective on the Shoah and examines a question that has engaged historians for decades: Was the Holocaust unique, or was it a catastrophe comparable to other genocides? Naimark, of Jewish-Galician descent, specializes in modern Eastern European history, and has studied and written about the history of ethnic cleansing and genocide. His publications include The Russians in Germany: The History of the Soviet Zone of Occupation; Fires of Hatred: Ethnic Cleansing in 20th Century Europe; and Stalin’s Genocides. He has been awarded the Officers Cross of the Order of Merit by Germany, and he is the recipient of the Alex Springer Berlin Prize from the American Academy in Berlin. This event will be held at the UC San Diego Biomedical Library Building in the Events Room. (Due to limited space, please RSVP to hlhw@ucsd.edu or 858-534-7661 if you are interested in attending this event.)

In addition to the HLHW lecture series, which attempts to teach the history of the Holocaust through face-to-face interactions, the HLHW also aims to engage Holocaust survivors, their relatives, students, and interested members if the public through the USC Shoah Foundation Institute’s Visual History Archive.

2015-16_HLHW2The UC San Diego Library is one of only three university libraries on the West Coast to have access to the Visual History Archive, which includes 52,000 digital oral testimonies recorded by Holocaust survivors and witnesses. Members of the campus community and the public can access the testimonies housed in the Visual Histories Archive, which come from 40,000 specific geographic locations in languages ranging from Bulgarian and Greek to Japanese and Spanish, from any computer on the UC San Diego campus.

The Visual History Archive was created by film maker Steven Spielberg to document the stories of Holocaust survivors for his movie, “Schindler’s List.” In 1994, Spielberg established the Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation, a non-profit organization, to collect and preserve firsthand accounts of survivors and other witnesses of the Holocaust. The foundation became the USC Shoah Foundation Institute for Visual History and Education in 2006.

For more information about UC San Diego’s Holocaust Living History Workshop, contact Susanne Hillman at HLHW@ucsd.edu or 858-534-7661. More information can also be found at: http://library.ucsd.edu/resources/holocaust-living-history-workshop/. Training in the use of the Visual History Archive is available for individuals and groups upon appointment.

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