The International School for Holocaust Studies
e-Newsletter for Holocaust Educators
Shalom and welcome to the 29th issue of Teaching the Legacy. This e-newsletter focuses on photography. In this newsletter we will explore the strengths and weaknesses of photographs as a historical source, and whether they reflect reality or interpret it. The newsletter contains an introductory article on the issues relevant to using photographs, and then a number of articles describe each issue discussed in the introduction in greater depth through the use of a case study of particular photographs.
Introductory Article – “Critical Analysis of Photographs as Historical Sources”
Article – “Who Took The Pictures? – The Ghetto Photography of Mendel Grossman in Lodz, As Compared With the Ghetto Photography of German ‘Ghetto Tourists’”
In assessing the use of photographs as tools in commemorating the Holocaust and as historical sources, one of the most important issues that we must be aware of is who the photographer was. In this article, we will compare pictures taken in the ghettos by the Jewish photographer Mendel Grossman, with pictures taken by German photographers for propaganda purposes and by the German soldier Joe Heydecker.
Article – “What Is the Photograph's Context? – The Auschwitz Album”
January 27th 2013 – Educational Resources for International Holocaust Remembrance Day
In November 2005, the United Nations passed a resolution to mark January 27 as an international day of commemoration to honor the victims of the Holocaust, and urged member states to develop educational programs to impart the memory of this tragedy to future generations. Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremonies will be organized on the international, national, regional and local levels, including in universities and schools. This site contains educational materials ahead of this date in multiple languages.
What’s New at Yad Vashem
- Ceremony Posthumously Honoring Joseph and Louise Materne of Belgium, as Righteous Among the Nations: On Thursday November 1, 2012, Yad Vashem held a ceremony posthumously honoring Joseph and Louise Materne of Belgium, as Righteous Among the Nations. Patricia Materne, granddaughter of Joseph and Louise, accepted the medal and certificate of honor on their behalf. The event took place in the presence of Ambassador of Belgium to Israel H.E. Ms. Benedicte Frankinet, Survivor Dr. Zalman Shiffer, grandchildren of the Righteous Patricia and Daniel Materne, family and friends.
- Yad Vashem Posthumously Honors Count Henry de Menthon as Righteous Among the Nations from France: On Wednesday, September 5, 2012, Yad Vashem held a ceremony posthumously honoring Count Henry de Menthon as Righteous Among the Nations from France. The event took place in the presence of the Survivor Dina Godschalk and French Ambassador to Israel HE Christoph Bigot, family and friends.
- President Peres tribute to Righteous Among the Nations Commission: President of Israel Shimon Peres honored 50 years of activity of the Commission for the Designation of the Righteous Among the Nations. In a moving reception at the President's Residence, Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev gave the President a special memento - a copy of the testimony that Peres' father Yitzhak Perski presented to the Commission in 1965 regarding an English soldier named Charles Coward. Coward aided Perski when they were both being held in a German POW camp in Greece. Chairman of the Yad Vashem Council Rabbi Israel Meir Lau, Commission Chairman Supreme Court Justice (ret.) Jacob Turkel and committee members also participated in the special event.
- Mashiv Haruach. From Safed to Jerusalem - A Concert of Jewish Soul Music: On 26 August 2012, a concert of Jewish soul music was held at Yad Vashem's Monument to the Jewish Soldiers and Partisans who fought against Nazi Germany. "Mashiv Haruach" From Safed to Jerusalem - A Concert of Jewish Soul Music - was held in the presence of hundreds of Holocaust survivors, next generations and friends of Yad Vashem from Israel and abroad. The monument made a perfect and imposing setting - the music soaring out across the Jerusalem hills. The music was a living memorial to the Jewish world destroyed during the Shoah, and the celebration of Jewish life that continues.
Article – “Inside the Epicenter of the Horror – Photographs of the Sonderkommando”
This article discusses four pictures that were taken inside the epicenter of the horror by the Sonderkommando in Auschwitz-Birkenau. They are the only known photographs that depict the actual process of mass killing perpetrated at the gas chambers. The exceptional status of the Sonderkommando photographs opens up debate about the memory and visual representation of the Holocaust.
Article – "The Eastern Front Photographs as Propaganda"
This article discusses the photographs taken by German soldiers and police officers in the occupied Eastern territories. These photographs are the result of the camera being used as a weapon to commemorate acts of violence, brutality and cruelty committed against helpless victims. Knowing why they were taken is instrumental to understanding these photographs.
An Interview with Nina Springer-Aharoni
Artifacts from the Holocaust
Righteous Among the Nations
Veseli and Fatima Veseli and their children: Refik, Hamid & Xhemal
This segment spotlights unique individuals who risked their lives in order to save Jews during the Holocaust. Here you can read the featured story of the Muslim family Veseli who saved the Jewish family Mandil. The young Refik Veseli who had worked in the same photoshop as Moshe Mandil suggested that the Mandils should move to his parents' home in the mountains after the Germans invaded Albania.
What’s New on the International School for Holocaust Studies Website?
What’s New at the International School for Holocaust Studies
View Yad Vashem’s newest publications.
In this section, we feature some Holocaust-related literature that may be of interest to educators and the general public. In this newsletter we feature Where is thy brother Abel? Documentary Photographs of the Warsaw Ghetto, written by Joe J. Heydecker, Teaching Controversial Issues in the Classroom: Key Issues and Debates, edited by Paula Cowan and Henry Maitles, and The Holocaust and Other Genocides: An Introduction (Amsterdam: NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies and Amsterdam University Press, 2012).
Editorial Board: Shulamit Imber, Dorit Novak, Dana Porath, Naama Shik
Editor: Sheryl Ochayon, Franziska Reiniger
Writing Staff: Richelle Budd-Caplan, Kathryn Berman, Liz Elsby, Jackie Metzger, Sheryl Ochayon, Franziska Reiniger
Design and Production: Stephanie Amara, Liz Elsby, Rachel Karlinsky
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