BOONE — The 18th Annual Martin and Doris Rosen Summer Symposium on Remembering the Holocaust will focus on drawing the parallels between the historical event and education.
The symposium —organized by Appalachian’ State University’s Center for Judaic, Holocaust, and Peace Studies — is taking place July 20-25 the university’s Plemmons Student Union. The event is named for symposium benefactors, the late Doris Rosen and Martin Rosen.
The event is free and open to the public. It aims to provide information to public and private school teachers, university faculty, students and community members about the victims, perpetrators and consequences of the Nazi Holocaust, according to the center. It will offer workshops, discussions, lectures by internationally recognized speakers, Nazi Holocaust survivor testimony, presentations and four continuing education credits for teachers.
“This year’s symposium explores the multifold connections between the Holocaust and education — tracing how the Nazi regime relied on schooling to secure support for its participatory dictatorship and racist policies and how persecuted Jews across German-controlled Europe enlisted education as a form of spiritual resistance and Amidah, even in the ghettos and camps,” according to the Center for Judaic, Holocaust, and Peace Studies. Lastly, the symposium will explore how school systems in North America and Europe teach — or fail to teach — histories of the Holocaust.”
Secondary-school teachers from Poland, Estonia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary and Romania will be among the participants and discuss the teaching of the Holocaust in their countries, according to the center.
The event’s faculty and speakers include Liz Elsby (International School for Holocaust Studies and Yad Vashem), Christina Chavarria (William Levine Family Institute for Holocaust Education at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum), Kathy Kacer (author of Holocaust literature for children) and Holocaust survivor Susan Warsinger.
According to the center, Warsinger is the daughter of a Jewish family and attended public and soon a private Jewish school in Nazi Germany throughout the 1930s. She escaped the Nazi henchmen by being smuggled into France, crossed the Pyrenees and boarded a ship in Lisbon bound for the U.S. In her adult life, she spent close to three decades as a school teacher in Prince George’s County Maryland school system.
The symposium also includes a screening of Roberta Grossman’s award-winning film “Who Will Write Our History.” The film focuses on a group of scholars, journalists and community leaders in the Warsaw Ghetto who sought to defeat Nazi lies by documenting and archiving life, suffering and death of the imprisoned Jewish population. The film combines the writings of the Oyneg Shabes archive with new interviews, rarely seen footage and dramatizations to grasp the struggles of this courageous resistance group.
The symposium is sponsored by The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, the Martin and Doris Rosen Endowment, the donors and friends of the Center for Judaic, Holocaust, and Peace Studies, Appalachian’s Reich College of Education, Belk Library and Information Commons, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Boone Jewish Community/Temple of the High Country, Havurah of the High Country, the Ruth and Stan Etkin Symposium Scholars’ Fund, the Leon Levine Foundation, the North Carolina Council on the Holocaust, Echoes and Reflections of Yad Vashem in Israel (in collaboration with the USC Shoah Foundation and the Anti-Defamation League) and the William Levine Family Institute for Holocaust Education at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.