As witnesses die, ‘Project’ keeps history alive


As the generation that bore witness to the Shoah is dying, Project Witness will host a three-day holocaust education conference next week on topic of “Transmitting Memory: Commemorating Heroism.”

The conference, which opens in Mahattan on Monday, July 24, will consider how the Jewish world can keep alive, after they’re gone, the legacy of those who lived through the terrors of the Holocaust.

Project Witness is a Brooklyn-based Shoah resource center that combines scholarship with cutting-edge media to provide thought provoking, educational resources to schools, shuls and communities at large.

The conference will include a lecture on shaalos and teshuvos surrounding the Holocaust, by Rabbi Moshe Tarashansky of Michlalah in Jerusalem, and an in-depth discussion on the propaganda war that the Nazis waged against European Jewry — by Dr. William Meinecke from the U.S. Holocaust Museum in Washington and Israel Bitton, an award-winning marketing and communications consultant who will cover “New Era Propaganda” and the growth of modern anti-Semitism.

A panel of teachers will discuss “methods of teaching the Holocaust in a variety of school settings,” hosted by educators from across America. 

A talk about children who were hidden during the Holocaust will be given by Dr. Mordechai Paldiel, a professor at Stern College, CUNY, and Touro College. Harav Ahron Lopiansky, Rosh Yeshiva of the Yeshiva of Greater Washington, will discuss hashkafic aspects of the Holocaust. 

Other presenters include the director of Project Witness, Ruth Lichtenstein, publisher of Hamodia; Rebbetzin Esther Farbstein, director of the Holocaust Education Center at the Jerusalem Teacher’s College, with a multi-media presentation on challenging questions surrounding the Shoah; Michael S. Glickman, president and CEO of the Museum of Jewish Heritage; and Judith Cohen, chief acquisitions curator of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.

The conference’s final day, on Wednesday, will open with a talk by Rochel Licht, a Holocaust educator and researcher, titled “Pre-War: Commemoration of a World Destroyed Leading to a Message of Hope and Rebirth,” which will cover the lasting legacy of Holocaust historian, Professor Yaffa Eliach. Lichtenstein will speak about rebuilding after the war “through publications, education and literature,” and there will be a lecture on teaching the Holocaust through literature by Charlotte Friedland, a former editor at Mesorah Publications and former director of publications at the OU.

Dr. Michael Berenbaum, director of the Sigi Ziering Institute, which explores the ethical and religious implications of the Holocaust, will consider “The Role of the Museum in Portraying the Holocaust.” The program will conclude with a lecture titled “Learning from Artifacts: How an Object Can Tell a Story,” by Dr. Paul Radensky, the Museum Educator for Jewish Schools at the Museum of Jewish Heritage.

The conference will be held from Monday, July 24, through Wednesday, July 26. The first day from 5 to 9 pm at the Center for Jewish History on W. 16 St. in Manhattan; the next two days at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, from 10 am to 5:30 pm. Price of admission for the full program is $100.

For more information call 718-WITNESS.