1 year ago




HOLOCAUST EDUCATION IN PEDAGOGY, HISTORY, AND PRACTICE 136 This is important to know and teach because: Studying the Holocaust is not about assigning blame to generations of individuals born after the events we are discussing. It is however, coming to terms with the historical and taking responsibility, learning from the past to build a better future for everyone, and understanding that genocide is not inevitable. Learning about the Holocaust also leads us to consider how various branches of government, social service, military and other departments work; how decisions are made, how people are informed, and the decision making process. Doctors, nurses and support staff volunteered to work in the Nazi so-called euthanasia program. Police officers and military personnel signed up to be part of the Einsatzgruppen, the mobile killing squads that swept across the Baltic states, the Balkans and parts of Eastern Europe eradicating the Jewish population in their wake. Individual choices carried responsibility, and learning about the Holocaust helps learners to understand the complex nature of history and how we are all responsible for our own actions. Concluding Thoughts on Answering Difficult Questions: Stories, myths, and misconceptions arise around many events—historical, social, even personal happenings in our daily lives. The Holocaust, however, was an unprecedented event in human history that had and continues to have ramifications across the globe and across generations. It continues to challenge the values and freedoms that define humanity and civilisation. Similarly, although the Holocaust holds a particular significance and meaning for the Jewish people, it also holds universal meaning for humankind. Like the signatories of the Stockholm Declaration, we too share a commitment to encourage the study of the Holocaust in all its dimensions. We are guided by honouring the memory of those murdered in the Holocaust—as well as those who survived—and committed to ensuring that sound, historically accurately information underpins Holocaust education. It is our sincerest hope that you will continue to be committed to this sacred work of teaching the Holocaust and that you will be guided by solid pedagogical principles: the principle of teaching the history accurately, the principle of researching the answers to questions your students might ask, and perhaps most importantly, the principle of seeking assistance and support in your own learning from scholars and master educators, and using research-based methodologies to help your students learn about and ultimately, from the Holocaust. [1] For further information, please see the guidelines for teaching the Holocaust as developed by the USHMM.

Work Cited Bergen, Doris L. (2016). War & Genocide: A Concise History of the Holocaust. Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield. Browning, Christopher. (1992). Ordinary Men. USA: Harper Perennial. Gray, Michael. (2014) Contemporary Debates in Holocaust Education. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan. Mais, Y. (Ed.). (2007). Daring to Resist: Jewish defiance in the Holocaust. New York, NY: Museum of Jewish Heritage. Rings,W. (1982). Life with the enemy: Collaboration and Resistance in Hitler’s Europe 1939-1945. New York: Doubleday. 137 HOLOCAUST EDUCATION IN PEDAGOGY, HISTORY, AND PRACTICE

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