UC San Diego’s Holocaust Living History Workshop (HLHW), co-sponsored by the UC San Diego Library and the Judaic Studies Program, will present two final lectures in its “Journeys, Memories, Echoes” series. The HLHW is an educational outreach program whose aim is to broaden understanding of the past, to foster tolerance, and to preserve the memory of victims and survivors of the Holocaust. Members of the campus community and the public have an opportunity to meet with survivors and scholars and to learn more about the Visual History Archive, the world’s largest compendium of Holocaust video testimony.
On Wednesday, May 7th, Ian Hancock will talk about his ground-breaking research Porrajmos: The Romanis and the Holocaust. The Judeocide is by far the best studied aspect of the Nazi agenda of persecution and destruction, while other victims have received comparatively little popular and scholarly coverage. It is a little known fact, for example, that the Holocaust claimed anywhere between 500,000 and 1.5 million Romani lives. Hancock will address this tragedy the Romani and Sinti refer to as “the Devouring” (Porrajmos).
Hancock received his PhD from London University, and for the last four decades has taught English and linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is also the director of the Romani Archives and Documentation Center. Through his scholarship and activism he has successfully drawn attention to the centuries-long discrimination of the Romani and has helped to reassess the Romani identity within the Western world. He has represented the Romani people at the United Nations, served as a member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, and is currently a state commissioner on the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission. Hancock’s published works include The Pariah Syndrome, We are the Romani People, and most recently, Danger! Educated Gypsy.
While the Porrajmos has generated relatively few written records, ever more Holocaust victims continue to come forward with their stories. On Wednesday, May 14th, Ruth Kluger will read from her best-selling book, Still Alive: A Holocaust Girlhood Remembered. Kluger was eleven years old when she and her mother were deported from her native Vienna to Theresienstadt, the Nazis’ “model ghetto.” Twelve grueling months later, she was deported to Auschwitz. After the war, Kluger emigrated to the United States where she became a professor of German literature. In 1992 she published her memoir, one of the most successful and unconventional Holocaust memoirs ever written. The recipient of numerous prestigious awards, Kluger lives in Irvine, California, where she continues to write.
This lecture is made possible by through the generosity of Phyllis and Dan Epstein. The lecturer will be introduced by UC San Diego history professor Frank Bless.
Please note times and locations: Parrajmos: The Romanis and the Holocaust will be held in Geisel Library’s Seuss Room on the UC San Diego campus. Still Alive: A Holocaust Girlhood Remembered will take place in The Great Hall. Both lectures are from 5 – 7 pm. Driving and parking directions are available on the HLHW website.
An integral part of the Holocaust Living History Workshop is the Visual History Archive. The UC San Diego Library is one of only three university libraries on the West Coast to have access to the Archive, which is administered by the Shoah Foundation Institute at the University of Southern California. In addition to the over 52,000 original testimonies from Holocaust witnesses and survivors, additional video testimonies with survivors of the Nanjing massacre have recently been added. The testimonies are in the original Mandarin with English subtitles. Students and members of the public can access the Archive from any computer on the UC San Diego campus.
For more information about UC San Diego’s Holocaust Living History Workshop, contact program coordinator Susanne Hillman at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to: http://library.ucsd.edu/hlhw. Training in the use of the Visual History Archive is available for individuals and groups upon appointment.