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Special Focus

Persecution

Displaying: 1 – 10 / 12

  • “Give Me Your Children”: Voices from the Lodz Ghetto

    The Jewish children of Lodz suffered the unfolding harsh realities and recorded their experiences. Their voices—preserved in letters, diaries, memoirs, and oral histories—as well as historical photographs, original documents, and objects from collections around the world offer a view into the struggle of a community and its young to live in spite of the most difficult circumstances.

    Themes

  • Black History month

    Black History Month

    The fate of black people from 1933 to 1945 in Nazi Germany and in German-occupied territories ranged from isolation to persecution, sterilization, medical experimentation, incarceration, brutality, and murder. The number of black people living in Nazi-occupied Europe was relatively small and there was no systematic program for their elimination.

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  • Deadly Medicine: Creating the Master Race

    From 1933 to 1945, Nazi Germany carried out a campaign to “cleanse” German society of people viewed as biological threats to the nation’s “health.” Enlisting the help of the medical community, the Nazis developed racial health policies that began with the mass sterilization of “genetically diseased” persons and ended with the near annihilation of European Jewry.

    Themes

  • Kristallnacht: The November 1938 Pogroms

    On November 9–10, 1938, the Nazis staged vicious pogroms—state sanctioned, anti-Jewish riots—against the Jewish community of Germany. These came to be known as Kristallnacht (now commonly translated as “Night of Broken Glass”).

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  • Nazi Persecution of the Disabled: Murder of the “Unfit”

    The Nazi persecution of persons with disabilities in Germany was one component of radical public health policies aimed at excluding hereditarily “unfit” Germans from the national community. These strategies began with forced sterilization and escalated toward mass murder. The most extreme measure, the Euthanasia Program, was in itself a rehearsal for Nazi Germany’s broader genocidal policies.

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  • Nuremberg Race Laws: Defining the Nation

    2015 marks the 80th anniversary of the Nuremberg Laws in Nazi Germany, where the state determined who you were and how you were treated.

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  • Personal Histories

    The items people chose to take with them as they fled Nazi persecution; a mother’s efforts to protect her child; the atmosphere in ghettos in the aftermath of roundups and deportations; conditions in cattle cars during deportation—these are among the experiences described in featured personal histories.

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  • Szpilman’s Warsaw: The History behind The Pianist

    The movie The Pianist is set in Holocaust-era Warsaw and tells the remarkable story of Polish-Jewish musician Wladyslaw Szpilman. Hunger and hiding, resistance both spiritual and violent, conscious choices and sheer luck—all of these played a role in the unlikely survival of Szpilman and the fate of hundreds of thousands of other Jews under Nazi control in Warsaw.

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  • German troops in front of a government building in Athens during the occupation of the city.

    The Holocaust in Greece

    The Germans defeated the Greek army in the spring of 1941 and occupied Greece until October 1944. The country was divided into three zones of occupation. Where Jews resided determined not only their subsequent fate but also their ultimate possibility of escape.

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  • Voyage of the St. Louis

    On May 13, 1939, the German transatlantic liner St. Louis sailed from Hamburg, Germany, for Havana, Cuba. On the voyage were 937 passengers. Almost all were Jews fleeing from the Third Reich. The German annexation of Austria in March 1938, the increase in personal assaults on Jews during the spring and summer, the nationwide Kristallnacht (“Night of Broken Glass”) pogrom in November, and the subsequent seizure of Jewish-owned property had caused a flood of visa applications. The plight of German-Jewish refugees, persecuted at home and unwanted abroad, is illustrated by the voyage of the St. Louis.

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Displaying: 1 – 10 / 12