Cover

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Frontmatter

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Contents

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Foreword

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pp. ix-xi

The essays in this volume are the work of teachers from a wide range of backgrounds, interests, and approaches, teachers who—some for only a few years, and others for considerably longer—have been engaged in a task that is both impossible and imperative: that of confronting students with the grand horror of the twentieth century, commonly termed...

Acknowledgments

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p. xii

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Introduction

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pp. 3-19

“Why,” our students ask, “do you choose to teach a subject as depressing as the Holocaust?”
“To change the world,” we respond, “one person at a time.” ...

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Part One: Course Content

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pp. 21-25

The broad, almost generic term “Holocaust course” refers to an instructional offering that may fulfill one or more functions. It may focus entirely on the Holocaust. It may serve as a touch-stone in a larger program of genocide studies. It may be a unit within a wider curriculum that includes art, literature, ethics, history, religious studies, jurisprudence, philosophy, theology, film studies, Jewish studies, German studies, composition, urban studies, or architecture. ...

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1. Uses of the Arts in the Classroom: An Unexpected Alternative

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pp. 26-52

The use of documentary film, photographs, and even fictionalized films or mixed fiction-and-nonfiction films is often taken for granted as being useful in the classroom or in other venues for teaching about the Holocaust.1 There is another area of visualization within Holocaust pedagogy that has been recognized in certain contexts but also neglected. ...

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2. History, Memory, and the City: Case Study-Berlin

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pp. 53-64

The upper-level seminar “History, Memory and the City: Case Study—Berlin,” taught through the Department of Architecture at the Wentworth Institute of Technology, in Boston, was developed to promote understanding of the connections among the Holocaust, political ideology, architecture, and urban design. ...

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3. Looking for Words: Teaching the Holocaust in Writing-Intensive Courses

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pp. 65-82

Let me begin with an apologetic of sorts: I do not teach a course on the Holocaust or one dedicated solely to the Holocaust. Rather, I have incorporated units of Holocaust-related literature into two courses, both of which are writing-intensive. The first is a college writing course; the second, a course in modern continental European literature. ...

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4. Teaching Business Ethics and the Holocaust

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pp. 83-102

No one would deny that a business ethics course should aspire to make people better than they are. But how can that be achieved?1 In what ways can an ethics course actually make students better? A lot of ink has been and continues to be spilled on these questions in business ethics. ...

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5. Teaching the Holocaust: The Ethics of "Witness" History

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pp. 103-115

Teaching the Shoah and ethics in tandem can be an arduous task. In my experience, this is a landscape fraught with moral land mines for any student or scholar of the Holocaust. The question at hand is how one negotiates the relationship between the objects or subjects of study and the subject who studies. ...

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6. From Archive to Classroom: Reflections on Teaching the History of the Holocaust in Different Countries

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pp. 116-133

More than a decade ago, Michael Marrus, one of the leading historians and teachers of Holocaust history, noted the intellectual and psychological impact of Holocaust studies on scholars and students: ...

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7. Teaching as Testimony: Pedagogical Peculiarities of Teaching the Holocaust

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pp. 134-147

“I wanted to come back to Sighet,” explains Moshe the Beadle in Elie Wiesel’s Night, “to tell you the story of my death. So that you could prepare yourselves while there was still time. . . . And see how it is, no one will listen to me.”1 In these few words, we have a paradigm for the dilemma of the survivor. ...

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8. Histories: Betrayed and Unfulfilled

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pp. 148-159

Peter Sloterdijk’s statement suggests the peril of discussing traditions in the post-Shoah era, for in the twentieth century, as he reminds his German audience, traditions may no longer embody the noble aspirations and humane ideals of a people. Instead, in a nightmarish inversion, traditions may perhaps imprison a people as a bombed-out city holds its...

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9. Cross-Disciplinary Notes: Four Questions for Teaching the Shoah

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pp. 160-171

Many years ago, I was teaching a course on the Shoah,1 and a woman student suddenly raised her hand and asked, “Professor Blumenthal, why are you barking at us?” I was, to be sure, taken aback, but I realized immediately that she was correct: I had been unpleasantly sharp with my students. ...

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10. Developing Criteria for Religious and Ethical Teaching of the Holocaust

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pp. 172-187

Christian theology and Christian religious education as such are no guarantees against genocide; on the contrary, the Christian religion and Christian religious education (catechetics) were themselves involved in the genesis of the Holocaust. ...

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Part Two: The Process and Nature of Student Learning

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pp. 189-191

Teaching the Holocaust imposes a sensitivity toward students that also carries a responsibility to them. The subject itself poses confrontations to students’ cognitive and emotional stasis. As the writers in this section explain, Christian students are likely to experience dissonance; they are constrained to question assumptions about the influence that Christianity exercised in preparing the context for and assisting in the perpetration of the Holocaust. ...

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11. Students' Affective Responses to Studying the Holocaust: Pedagogical Issues and an Interview Process

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pp. 193-208

This chapter is about the role of the affective dimension in students’ learning about the Holocaust—as an expression of the ways in which students give value to and take responsibility for their knowledge and understanding, and as a means for instructors to help students toward better integration of the knowledge they have gained through study of...

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12. Keeping the Faith: Exploring the Holocaust with Christian Students

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pp. 209-220

Teaching is ultimately about decision making and therefore can be considered to have its own ethic(s). Before she enters her classroom, each teacher begins in and from her own context, within which the endless decisions about her teaching are made, and by which those decisions are informed if not directly influenced. ...

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13. Teaching Theology after Auschwitz: A Political-Theological Perspective

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pp. 221-234

After World War II, the Catholic theologian Johann-Baptist Metz developed a new political theology. In opposition to Carl Schmitt (1888–1985)—Adolf Hitler’s “crown jurist,” who had worked out a political theology based on the Catholic traditionalists of the nineteenth century, and who had focused on the institution of the Catholic Church in terms of its...

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Part Three: Progress and Process: Higher Education, Museums, and Memorials

This section of the book moves the subject of the Holocaust from the classroom to the institution: the university, the surrounding community, the community college, the museum or memorial, and the endowed symposium. The chapters explore the issue of Holocaust education as, on the one hand, an unwelcome addition to the campus and its surrounding community and, on the other, a welcome permanence. ...

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14. The Tensions of Teaching: Truth and Consequences

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pp. 237-248

When Commentary’s Gabriel Schoenfeld attacked academics for their Holocaust scholarship, apparently denouncing any approach to the study of the Shoah with which he did not personally agree, he vowed that he would stop all scholars doing such research “in their tenure-tracks.”1 ...

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15. An Unlikely Setting: Holocaust Education in Orange County

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pp. 249-259

While Los Angeles has been at the forefront of Holocaust education and remembrance—the city is home to UCLA’s Center for Jewish Studies, with the first endowed professorship in Holocaust studies in the United States; to the Simon Wiesenthal Center and Museum of Tolerance; to the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust; and to the University of Judaism,...

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16. The Importance of Teaching the Holocaust in Community Colleges: Democratizing the Study of the Holocaust

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pp. 260-270

In 1946, President Harry S. Truman issued a report that established community college education as a right for every American. He set into motion a system that facilitated upward mobility for all U.S. residents. His goal—to have every resident in the nation live within commuting distance of postsecondary education—may not have been fully realized, but his action...

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17. Teaching about the Holocaust in the Setting of Museums and Memorials

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pp. 271-283

There is a link between sites where specific acts of history occurred and sites such as museums where those acts of history are represented. But they are not identical. This chapter explores the experience of visiting Holocaust museums as a learning experience. It explores how perceptions are influenced, learning is engaged, and personal responses are devel-...

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18. Dialogue at the Threshold: The Pastora Goldner Holocaust Symposium and the Work of Tikkun Olam

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pp. 284-297

Scholarly conferences typically provide academics with opportunities to present papers and to test ideas, sharing their scholarship with peers. They also provide moments of nurture and insight that grow out of the gatherings over meals or at coffee breaks in the interstices of these gatherings. ...

About the Editors and Contributors

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pp. 299-308

Index

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pp. 309-328