Contextualizing the Holocaust — Why It Still Matters Today- A conversation in Salem, Oregon

Contextualizing the Holocaust —
Why It Still Matters Today
A lecture, film and discussion

To explore this theme, we will be viewing a short film, The Path to Nazi Genocide, followed by a brief discussion facilitated by Rob Hadley, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Regional Education Corps Member. Then, Second-Generation Survivor, Deb Mrowka will talk about her mother’s experience surviving the Holocaust. This event is appropriate for audiences of middle-school age and older.The event begins at 2pm, Saturday, May 17, 2014 at the Salem Central Library, 585 Liberty St SE Salem,OR 97301

Salem May Workshop Registration

On Sunday, May 18, Stephanie McMahon – Kaye, Desk for International Seminars in English, The International School for Holocaust Studies, Yad Vashemin Israel will be in Oregon to offer an invaluable training. We will be offering a multi-track  day, with one track for those educators who have done an Echoes & Reflections training with us before, and another for those who have yet to receive that training.

We will provide much needed resources for CCSS implementation as well as materials that give a balanced perspective of the Holocaust combined with some of the most student-centered pedagogical techniques that help students use high-level critical thinking to understand the complexity of history. The training is free and includes the a curriculum guide, which is $100 if purchased separately from the training, as well as other resources.  This training would be most relevant for high school and middle school Social Studies and English teachers; however, all are invited to attend.

Join us at McNary High School in Salem, Oregon from 12pm-5pm on Sunday, May 18, 2014. Graduate credit is available through Western Oregon University.


Registration for May Workshop

Testimony and Accountability: Witnessing and Observing in War Crimes Tribunals and Truth Commissions

Testimony and Accountability: Witnessing and Observing in War Crimes Tribunals and Truth Commissions

Lecture by David Cohen

Thursday, January 30th, 7pm
Portland State University, Smith Memorial Student Union 236

1825 SW Broadway

Free and open to the public

The talk will discuss the role of observers/monitors and witnesses in international and national criminal tribunals in Indonesia, Cambodia, East Timor, Rwanda, and Sierra Leone. Witness testimony plays a central role in tribunals and truth commissions, but numerous problems arise in evaluating witness testimony as well as in connection with the experience of witnesses in interaction with these institutions. Drawing on experience from a number of past or ongoing justice processes in the aftermath of mass atrocity we will examine how the reception and experience of witnessing differs in various contexts, from closed to open hearings, from victim to insider testimony, and from investigation to trial.

David Cohen is Professor in the Graduate School at UC Berkeley, Professor of Law at the University of Hawaii, and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and at the East-West Center in Honolulu. He has worked on transitional justice issues, monitored war crimes or human trials, and engaged in judicial capacity building programs in East Timor, Cambodia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Sierra Leone, the former Yugoslavia, and Rwanda. He has also served as Expert Advisor to the Truth and Friendship Commission of Indonesia and East Timor and works closely with a number of NGOs and university human rights centers in Southeast Asia. His research focuses on war crimes trials and transitional justice from WWII to today.

This event is free and open to the public. It is part of the Holocaust and Genocide Studies Project Series at the Portland Center for Public Humanities.

Nazi Medicine, Collective Evil, and the Role of Physicians during the Holocaust A Special Lecture by Dr. Sal Mangione

The Legacy Good Samaritan Foundation in partnership with the Institute for Judaic Studies, the Oregon Jewish Museum and the Oregon Holocaust Resource Center invite you to  invite you to this special lecture on Tuesday, August 27, 2013 at 7pm


Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center
Auditorium, Building 2
1040 NW 22 nd Ave
Portland, Oregon 97210

Free and open to the public
Almost seventy years after the liberation of Auschwitz the horror of the Shoah remains as haunting to mankind as ever, as indicated by countless books, documentaries, and monographs dedicated to the subject. German doctors were the most heavily nazified profession in the Third Reich, with every second male physician becoming a party member between 1933 and 1945. In fact, many physicians were perpetrators, who not only provided “scientific” legitimization and manpower to domestic campaigns of sterilization and euthanasia, but who themselves participated in pseudo-scientific experiments on concentration camp prisoners. Ultimately these crimes led to the Nuremberg’s “Doctors’ Trial” of 1947, with six physicians receiving prison sentences ranging from 10 years to life, and seven being instead condemned to death.

Ironically, while American judges were sending German physicians to the gallows for experimenting on Poles, Russians and Jews, American physicians from the Department of Public Health were doing exactly the same on fellow-Americans (the Tuskegee experiment) plus close to 3,000 Guatemalan citizens (something that surfaced only recently). This presentation will explore not only the problem of collective evil and its “banality” (i.e. what makes “normal” individuals — with mortgages, wives and pets — wake up one morning and decide to slaughter the grandmother next door), but also why
physicians often became perpetrators.

Dr. Sal Mangione is a clinician-educator with a long interest in Physical Diagnosis, Medical History and community service. After obtaining his MD summa cum laude from the Catholic University of Rome, Dr. Mangione trained in Internal Medicine and Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the Medical College of Pennsylvania, before eventually moving to Jefferson Medical College where he is currently Associate Professor of Medicine, Associate Program Director for the Internal Medicine Residency, Director of the second year Physical Diagnosis Course, and coordinator for the History of Medicine lecture series and the Jefferson Medical Cineforum.

2013 Awards Luncheon for Sala Kryszek Art & Writing Competition

Please join us as we congratulate the winners of this year’s 2013 Sala Kryszek Writing & Art Competition, Sunday, May 5, 2013 at Noon  for lunch at the Multnomah Athletic Club. Tickets for the event are available through the office by calling 503-245-2733 or through pay pal. The cost of lunch is $20. Tickets can be purchased below:

Echoes & Reflections Holocaust Training-April 13, 2013, Vancouver WA

Echoes & Reflections Holocaust Training
Saturday, April 13, 2013 from 9am-noon
Vancouver, WA
Room 100, Bates Center for Educational Leadership 2921 Falk Rd., Vancouver, WA 98661 (Part of the complex for Eleanor Roosevelt Elementary School and Parsley Center District Offices)

Each workshop participant will receive a complimentary copy of “Echoes and Reflections — A Multimedia Curriculum on the Holocaust”. Ten multi-part lessons are provided with a companion DVD of over two hours of visual history testimony from 51 survivors and other witnesses of the Holocaust. Each lesson is supported with numerous primary source documents as well as poems, literature excerpts, diary entries, artwork, and maps. Includes materials that support differentiated instruction and promotes contemporary connections to cultural diversity, intolerance, and genocide. Appropriate for English, Social Studies or Art teachers who are teaching The Diary of Anne Frank, Night, WWII, and contemporary genocide issues.

Register here:

Noontime Film Series with OJM

The Oregon Jewish Museum and Oregon Holocaust Resource Center are working together to bring a noontime film series to the community that focus on themes of bearing witness, reconciliation, and redemption.
All films are free to the public and begin at 12:00pm at OJM and OHRC’s building at 1953 NW Kearney St.
April 3- Night and Fog:
Ten years after the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps, filmmaker Alain Resnais documented the abandoned grounds of Auschwitz. One of the first cinematic reflections on the horrors of the Holocaust, Night and Fog (Nuit et brouillard) contrasts the stillness of the abandoned camps’ quiet, empty buildings with haunting wartime footage. With Night and Fog, Resnais investigates the cyclical nature of man’s violence toward man and presents the unsettling suggestion that such horrors could come again. 35 minutes with discussion following.  Optional showing of In Her Own Words: Jewish Partisan Faye Schulman Interview (45 mins.)
April 10-  Coexist:
The documentary film, Coexist, tells the stories of trauma survivors searching for ways to coexist with their loved ones’ murderers. As the Rwandan government forces citizens to consider reconciliation, we examine the varied paths survivors choose when forced to engage with people who perpetrated crimes during the genocide. In a world where innocent people are attacked or killed because of who they are, we challenge you: how can Rwandans experiences inform efforts to build peaceful coexistence, eliminate hate crimes, and prevent violence? 40 minutes + extra video footage.
With only a yellowing photograph in hand, a young man – also named Jonathan Safran Foer – sets out to find the woman who may or may not have saved his grandfather from the Nazis. Accompanied by an old man haunted by memories of the war; an amorous dog named Sammy Davis, Junior, Junior; and the unforgettable Alex, a young Ukrainian translator who speaks in a sublimely butchered English, Jonathan is led on a quixotic journey over a devastated landscape and into an unexpected past. 106 minutes.

Unto Every Person There Is A Name-Monday, April 8, 2013

“Unto Every Person There Is A Name”
Monday, April 8, 2013

Every year hundreds of Jewish communities around the world perpetuate the memory of the victims of the Holocaust through the program, Unto Every Person There is a Name, a public recitation of Holocaust victims’ names, ages and birthplaces on Yom HaShoah – the Day of Remembrance.

Once again, the Oregon Area Jewish Committee and the Oregon Holocaust Resource Center are sponsoring this special Yom HaShoah program. This year it will be held on Monday, April 8 at Pioneer Courthouse Square, downtown, from 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM. People from all walks of life will read from a list of names provided by Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Research Center. The program’s opening ceremony will include poetry, prayers, and candle lighting. More than 6,000 names will be read during the course of the day.

Yom HaShoah Community Commemoration-Sunday, April 7, 2013

Yom HaShoah Community Commemoration
Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Oregon Holocaust Resource Center and Oregon Board of Rabbis invite you to:Yom HaShoah- Holocaust Remembrance Day
Memory as Resistance – 70 Years after the Warsaw Ghetto
Sunday, April 7th 4 PM
Rose Schnitzer Manor – Zidell Hall
This event is open to all adults and youth in middle school & high school. We encourage you to attend. Please bring with you a stone to place upon our memorial table.

The public is also invited to visit the Oregon Holocaust Memorial in Washington Park in observance of the day. Docents will be available from 1:00-3:00 P.M. to guide interested visitors through the Memorial.

Pictures of Resistance: The Wartime Photographs of Jewish Partisan Faye Schulman-February 27, 2013 – April 24, 2013

Opening Reception: Wednesday, February 27, 5:30pm – 7:30pm

Pictures of Resistance:

The Wartime Photographs of Jewish Partisan Faye Schulman

February 27, 2013 – April 24, 2013
The Oregon Jewish Museum
We are pleased to partner with the OJM on this exhibit.

The majority of European Jews during the Second World War had no idea that the Nazis were conducting a meticulous disinformation campaign to convince them that they were going to work camps instead of being exterminated. Yet between 20,000- 30,000 Jews escaped from Nazi ghettos and camps to form or join organized resistance groups.  Known as partisans, their lives depended on their ability to remain unseen undocumented and unidentifiable. One such partisan, Faye Schulman, carried her camera. Schulman’s rare collection of images captured the camaraderie, horror and loss, bravery and triumph of the rag-tag, tough partisans – some Jewish, some not—who fought the Germans and their collaborators.

Faye Schulman is the only known Jewish partisan photographer who took pictures of Jewish partisan resistance. Born Faigel Lazebnik to a respected Jewish family in Lenin, Poland, she was introduced to photography at the age of ten by her older brother Moishe who ran the town’s only photography studio.

In 1941 Germany troops occupied eastern Poland. Jewish men were deported to labor camps and Jewish women and children were imprisoned in a ghetto. As the only remaining photographer in the area (her brother moved away before this time), Faye’s skills made her valuable to the Nazi’s and her life was spared when the rest of the ghetto’s 1,800 Jews were massacred.

Eventually escaping from the Germans, Faye joined a Russian partisan brigade in the forests along the Polish-Russian border. For more than two years, she documented the camaraderie, horror and loss, bravery and triumph of the partisans, through the artistry of her photography.

In Pictures of Resistance, Faye’s remarkable photographs and moving narratives make the images real, impressing upon the viewer the horror of war, the lessons of revenge, and resolution and the resilience of one woman’s spirit. The exhibit poses probing questions about the life of the only known Jewish woman partisan photographer. Why did Faye Schulman become a war documentarian at great risk to her life?  How did she get photographic supplies, much less develop the film?  How did she manage to survive as one of the few Jewish women among the Partisans?

Pictures of Resistance is a traveling exhibit produced by the Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation, curated by Jill Vexler and made possible by Thomas and Johanna Baruch, the Epstein/Roth Foundation, the Purjes Foundation, the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, the Koret Foundation, the Taube Foundation for Jewish Life and Culture, the Holocaust Council of UJA Metro West, and Diane and Howard Wohl.

The mission of the Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation is to develop and distribute educational materials about the Jewish partisans and their life lessons in order to bring an understanding of heroic resistance against tyranny to educational and cultural organizations.  For more information please go to


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