Mini Course Info – How We Remember: The Legacy of the Holocaust Today

Thank you for participating in Echoes & Reflections Mini Course How We Remember: The Legacy of the Holocaust Today. We hope you found the experience enriching and useful to your teaching needs. 

To further support your classroom instruction on this thematic approach, you now have access to the plethora of resources referenced throughout the course.  The materials below are listed by the section in which they were introduced in the course. 

We hope you will find these resources helpful in informing your teaching.

Introduction to Echoes & Reflections Pedagogy

In this section, you were introduced to pedagogical principles for effective teaching as well as the first visual history survivor testimony.

“Setting the Stage”: The Potsdam Conference of 1945

To understand the historical legacy of the Holocaust and how it is memorialized today, we must first contextualize the history. We begin with the Potsdam conference, shortly after V E Day in Europe, where Allied leaders met for the first time to discuss how they would reckon with Nazi crimes, seek justice, and rebuild shattered lives and nations across Europe.

Complicity and Responsibility: Who were the Perpetrators?

The primary actors in the Holocaust were the perpetrators and collaborators, the people across Europe who were active in the destruction of European Jewish life. In this section, we focused on the “average” perpetrators–the individuals, businesses, and nations–as well as their victims.

Who are Bystanders?

Although they were not perpetrators or collaborators, “regular people”–not soldiers, politicians, or administrators–had an important role in the Holocaust. Here we study how the inaction of others can enable and embolden perpetrators to become more brutal and see indifference as tacit approval.

What is “Justice”?

This section explores the definition of “Justice” and the context of achieving justice for the victims of the Holocaust. Here we also ask difficult questions about whether or not justice could be achieved in full and how the Allies attempted to pursue justice through the Nuremberg Trials.

Memories of the Holocaust

Memory informs both historical perspective as well as how society remembers and memorializes major events. As we shift from the Holocaust to the period directly after, we must remember the extreme difficulty for survivors to live with the memory of the Holocaust.

Understanding Trauma and the Human Impact

Trauma is a difficult psychological concept that manifests itself in a variety of ways based on a multitude of factors, but understanding it helps us contextualize the experiences of Holocaust survivors and how they choose to remember and memorialize their experiences. Many survivors chose to process their trauma through artwork.

Holocaust Memorials in Europe and the United States

As we reflect on the differences between “history” and “memory”–but also how each informs study of the other–we focus on the lasting legacy of the Holocaust through memorials, which serve to both teach the history and also honor the legacy and memory of victims.