By Jennifer Hansen-Glucklich
Holocaust memorials and museums face a tricky activity as their staffs attempt to commemorate and rfile horror. at the one hand, the occasions museums signify are past such a lot people’s studies. whilst they can be portrayed by means of theologians, artists, and philosophers in ways in which are already identified through the general public. Museum directors and curators have the tough function of discovering an inventive approach to current Holocaust indicates to prevent clichéd or dehumanizing portrayals of sufferers and their suffering.
In Holocaust reminiscence Reframed, Jennifer Hansen-Glucklich examines representations in 3 museums: Israel’s Yad Vashem in Jerusalem, Germany’s Jewish Museum in Berlin, and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. She describes quite a few visually notable media, together with structure, images shows, artifact screens, and video installations so as to clarify the cultured options that the museums hire. As she translates the indicates, Hansen-Glucklich clarifies how museums speak Holocaust narratives in the historic and cultural contexts particular to Germany, Israel, and the USA. In Yad Vashem, architect Moshe Safdie constructed a story fitted to Israel, rooted in a redemptive, Zionist tale of homecoming to a spot of mythic geography and renewal, not like dying and affliction in exile. within the Jewish Museum in Berlin, Daniel Libeskind’s structure, damaged traces, and voids emphasize absence. right here indicates speak a conflicted ideology, torn among the lack of a Jewish earlier and the country’s present multicultural ethos. the USA Holocaust Memorial Museum provides another lens, conveying via its indicates a feeling of sacrifice that's a part of the civil values of yank democracy, and attempting to conquer geographic and temporal distance. One well-know instance, the pile of millions of trainers plundered from focus camp sufferers encourages the customer to bridge the space among viewer and sufferer.
Hansen-Glucklich explores how every one museum’s thought of the sacred shapes the layout and choreography of visitors’ reviews inside of museum areas. those areas are websites of pilgrimage that could in flip result in rites of passage
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Extra resources for Holocaust Memory Reframed: Museums and the Challenges of Representation
Zakhor 25 By linking the messianic idea with the condition of exile, Scholem points toward a possible continuity between messianism and Zionism. ”38 Arthur Hertzberg and Jacob Katz have made the link between messianism and Zionism more explicit. ”39 The presentation of the Zionist narrative in Yad Vashem relies on messianic imagery to evoke an experience of sacred time. In addition to the visitors’ passage through the museum, a visual demonstration of this principle appears in Yad Vashem’s Memorial to the Deportees, to be discussed in chapter 6.
24 Such a claim questions the very nature of the museum and its ultimate task. Is the role of the museum to teach Germans about German Jewish history? Or is it to promote tolerance and pave the way for a better relationship between Germans and their neighbors of different ethnicities and religions? Or perhaps it should provide a space for memory and mourning after the Holocaust? It comes as no surprise that a Jewish Museum in the heart of Germany’s capital would create a stir. Although Berlin does possess a national memorial to the Holocaust—the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (Das Denkmal an die ermordeten Juden Europas)—Germany lacks a national Holocaust museum.
The only way to repair this rupture, Fackenheim maintains, is to survive and endure as Jews. 13 A second important voice in the discussion of the sanctity of the Holocaust is Elie Wiesel. As a public figure, Wiesel is recognized for his Holocaust memoir writing, public speeches and service, and objections to Zakhor 15 representations of the Holocaust in popular culture. Wiesel is perhaps the most widely known advocate of the idea that the Holocaust belongs to sacred history; he has declared the Holocaust to be equal to the revelation at Mount Sinai, finding in it a sacredness of the highest order in Judaism.