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"Auschwitz in the collective consciousness in Poland and abroad" - seminar in Poland for Israeli educators


20 educators, guides and staff from several institutions in Israel dealing with the history of the Holocaust participated in a 12-day seminar in Poland on "Auschwitz in the collective consciousness in Poland and abroad".


The programme began at the Auschwitz Memorial on 16 July. In addition to visiting the site of the former German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, participants attended a series of lectures by historians from the Museum Research Centre on various aspects of the history of Auschwitz and met with staff from the International Centre for Auschwitz and Holocaust Education, Archives, Collections, and Conservation. The group also visited the grounds of the former Auschwitz III-Monowitz camp, the Jawiszowice sub-camp, the main points on the camp's evacuation route to Gliwice, and the Auschwitz Jewish Centre.

The second part of the seminar consisted of a study tour. The programme in Cracow included a visit to two branches of the Historical Museum of the City of Cracow - the Podgórze Museum and Oskar Schindler's Factory - as well as a tour of Kazimierz and a lecture on the significance of Auschwitz history in Poland. The group spent the next two days in Łódź, exploring the city's rich multicultural history through thematic guided walks, a visit to the Central Museum of Textiles, the Museum of Cinematography and the Marek Edelman Dialogue Centre, and learning about the painful history of Łódź during World War II by visiting the Radegast Station. They also visited the Museum of the former German extermination camp Kulmhof in Chelmno nad Nerem.

“The seminar holds great significance for educators from Israel. Many of them come to Poland with groups of young people but do not always find the time to meet with experts and visit places off the regular routes. We believe that through our seminar programmes, they see the great potential of cultural institutions in Poland and enrich their knowledge," said Katarzyna Odrzywołek-Paleta, seminar coordinator at the ICEAH.

"The seminar provided us with a plethora of new information. Listening to and learning about the Polish narrative was an interesting experience. It was fascinating to hear Jewish history from the Polish perspective; how much you care about telling it," - said Eran Carasso, coordinator of the seminar on the part of Yad Vashem.