Students in our tenth grade Modern World History classes will view the exhibit as part of their unit on the Holocaust and its legacy, and global impact, as part of a larger focus on past and present genocides including Armenia, Cambodia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Rwanda, and Darfur. Students will be investigating what prompted leaders to commit such horrific acts against humanity and the lasting impact it had on its victims and survivors and their descendants. Students will also explore and examine the role of the bystander (both individuals and nations) while these acts were being committed and what could have been done to stop or curb the violence.
“The Courage to Remember” program is on loan to Braintree High School through the generosities of Dr. & Mrs. Max Perlitsh of Winchester, Massachusetts, and Merrimack College in North Andover, Massachusetts. To assist teachers with the treatment of the content, the Braintree High School social studies department has developed a content and resource guide. This guide will identify the posters in the exhibit display as well as a list of suggested resources and activities that teachers can incorporate in their instruction.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is an international human rights organization dedicated to educating how to confront anti-Semitism, hate, and terrorism, promoting human rights and dignity, and teaching the lessons of the Holocaust for future generations. The exhibit is part of Braintree High School’s anti-bullying campaign and is an opportunity for students to reflect, think, and discuss about hate, bullying, and the role of bystander, and the implications and unintended consequences of being indifferent and doing nothing while witnessing acts of bullying and hate toward others.
On Wednesday, April 4, 2018, invited keynote guest speakers will come to Braintree High School and speak to our students on genocide and on the Holocaust. These presentations will be held in the Grabosky Auditorium and in the media center on the second floor. Students, faculty, and the community are all invited (space permitting). The following speakers are scheduled to speak:
Ms. Edythe Holzman will present a 45-minute creative memoir entitled, “Yesterday’s Nightmares – Tomorrow’s Dreams (Anne Frank and Me).” This performance intertwines Ms. Holzman’s family’s history during the Holocaust and Anne Frank’s life at that time. This dramatic presentation includes both events of the day as well as her dramatically-created episodes. It explores the effects on Ms. Holzman (when she was thirteen) and others of seeing the play “The Diary of Anne Frank” on Broadway in 1955. It further examines attitudes, prejudices and behaviors from Anne Frank’s time to the present. April 4, 2018, 9:39 a.m. Grabosky Auditorium.
Dr. Samuel Bernstein, a playwright and Professor of English at Northeastern University will be presenting to Grade 10 students as part of their Modern World/U.S. History curriculum on the Holocaust. He will share his story and his work, Olympics Uber Alles, which he co-wrote with Ms. Margureite Krupp, on the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. April 4, 10:40 a.m.
“I am a tenured full professor in the Department of English at Northeastern University, where I have taught for 52 years. My areas of specialization are dramatic literature and creative writing. A book I wrote entitled The Strands Entwined is a study of the merging of realistic and absurdist strains in the drama of the United States. I have also published articles on the writing of America’s distinguished playwright, Eugene O’Neill. Speaking on dramatic literature and related matters has taken me to many parts of the world. Besides scholarly writing and lectures in foreign places, I have written many plays, several of which have been presented as full productions and/or stage readings in New York City and Boston. Some time ago, I won the DeKalb Literary Arts Journal National Short Story Competition. Among my artistic endeavors that relate to our session today is the writing and production of a play called Olympics Uber Alles, which I wrote with Ms. Margureite Krupp, a writer of German background. That play recounts the difficult and disappointing experience of two Jewish athletes who were denied the opportunity to participate in the 1936 Berlin/Hitler Olympics.”
Mr. Jack Trompeter will return to BHS and speak about the lessons learned from the Holocaust and how the role of “bystander” only perpetuates conflict. Mr. Trompeter was born in Amsterdam in August 1942 during the Nazi occupation and the hunting down of the Jews of Holland. Mr. Trompeter went into hiding at 3 months, separated from my parents until he was three years old, when he was reunited with them after the liberation. He emigrated to the USA in 1949, became a commercial artist, farmer, artisan and Holocaust survivor speaker. Jack currently lives in Cambridge with his wife. April 4, 12:10 p.m. Grabosky Auditorium.
“I was born in Amsterdam in Aug. 1942 during the Nazi occupation and the hunting down of the Jews of Holland. Went into hiding at 3 months, separated from my parents til I was almost 3 yrs. old and reunited with them after the liberation. Emigrated to the USA in 1949, became a commercial artist, farmer, artisan and Holocaust survivor speaker.”
Dr. Daniel Osborn teaches at Dean College in Franklin, Massachusetts, and currently serves as the New England Program Associate for Facing History and Ourselves in Brookline, Massachusetts. Dr. Osborn will address Jewish identity and life before the Holocaust; anti-Semitism and perceptions of the other, and Holocaust remembrance through art and culture. April 4, 7:35 a.m.
Ms. Barbara Aharoni and Mr. Harry Shamir. Barbara is a first generation American who lost many immediate family members during the Holocaust, including her paternal grandmother who is her namesake. She tells the documented story of what happened to her grandmother and the surrounding Jewish population in Lithuania during July-August 1941.” She teaches at a local synagogue and is the chair of the Plymouth chapter of No Place for Hate! Harry Shamir was born in November 1938, in Bologna, Italy, under the Fascist regime of Mussolini. In 1942, his parents and he escaped the Nazis and fled from Vichy France to Switzerland in rather dramatic fashion. He tells the story in about half an hour. Unlike a TV drama the story remains, unforgotten. His grandparents along with 76,000 other French Jews kidnapped in August 1942 by the Vichy government willing collaborators, were murdered in Auschwitz or died transported there in train cattle cars. Ms. Aharoni will speak on Tuesday, April 3, at 1:10 p.m. Mr. Shamir will speak on Wednesday, April 4 at 8:35 a.m.
Dr. Mishy Lesser. Mishy Lesser, Ed.D., is the learning director for the Upstander Project and Education Fellow at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center at the University of Connecticut. She is co-director of the Upstander Academy, a weeklong professional learning experience for teachers that focuses on genocide and human rights education and the skills of upstanders. Currently Dr. Lesser spends much of her time researching and writing a five-part digital teacher’s guide for Dawnland. Mishy authored the Coexist Teacher’s Guide to promote learning about the complexity of reconciliation in post-genocide Rwanda. She is a Circle Keeper and has been featured on WBUR (Boston) and PRI/BBC’s The World. Mishy was a Fulbright Scholar in Ecuador and spent 12 years studying and working in the Andes. Dr. Lesser will present in the BHS media center on Wednesday, April 4, at 1:10 p.m.
We are deeply appreciative for these individuals to make time to come and speak to our students on this very important topic and to never forget the past so that we can all build a brighter future.
Photo courtesy of Braintree High School (The Courage to Remember Exhibit at Braintree High School. 2008. Photographed by Gorman Lee.)