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ASC German Club, Hillel Organize Holocaust Lecture

The Agnes Scott German (Faust) Club and ASC Hillel have teamed up to organize a lecture by a Holocaust survivor on March 22. See the flyer below for details and spread the information widely:


Playing for Germany = Playing for the Murderers?

Today’s NYT has an article featuring Evan Kaufmann, Minnesota-born hockey player who is now on Germany’s national team. While an accelerated trading of citizenships is not uncommon in the world of sports, Kaufmann’s case sticks out because of his family history: His great-grandparents and one grandparent had been murdered by the Nazis.

While representatives of the German Jewish community overwhelmingly welcome the move. In their eyes it re-affirms the role of Jewish citizens as “normal” in all parts of German society.

Representatives of survivor groups are not as unambiguous:

“I have mixed emotions,” said Menachem Z. Rosensaft, a New York lawyer who is the vice president of the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Their Descendants. “I think everyone has to make his own decisions in this respect. It is clear for Kaufmann that hockey is the most important priority. Just like there are Israelis or other Jews who have settled in Germany out of economic or career convenience, he is doing the same. I do not presume to judge him.”

At the same time, Rosensaft said he felt “a bitter aftertaste and a certain degree of sadness” for Kaufmann. “He has effectively turned his back on the United States and has willingly taken on citizenship to identify henceforth as a German,” Rosensaft said. “That, in terms of his family history, is at best a somber reality. There is a question in my mind whether a Jew should voluntarily go to Germany and take on that role.”

To read the full article click here.

Here’s a clip showing Kaufmann answering some interview questions in German (scene with Kaufmann starts at 3:07min):

Israeli Film Engages with Notorious Nazi “Documentary” about Warsaw Ghetto

Films produced during the National Socialist era are difficult to deal with, especially films that purport to be “documentaries.” It’s hard to tell what was part of the propaganda machine and what was not. For many decades, an unfinished “documentary” about the Warsaw Ghetto, titled “Das Ghetto,” was mined by historians and journalists when supposedly authentic images of life in the Ghetto were required. In 1998, film historians discovered a reel with about 30 minutes of outtakes that proved the careful staging of many scenes thought to be authentic.

Israeli director Yael Hersonski’s “A Film Unfinished” addresses the question of authenticity in the 1942 film and presents an intriguing filmic investigation of a visual text that was long considered to be an objective window into a horrific historical episode. Read the NYT review here and watch the trailer here.

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