Facing History and Ourselves spends 3 days at Museum

fot. Muzeum Historii Żydów Polskich

Facing History and Ourselves, an international organization dedicated to creating a tolerant, morally upstanding society by educating students about the Holocaust and other examples of genocide, spent 3 days at the Museum of the History of Polish Jews as part of their weeklong study visit to Poland.

The Facing History group, comprised of board members and their families, spent their first day getting acquainted with the Museum, its work, and the challenges it faces during guided tours and a panel discussion with Marian Turski, Chairman of the Museum Council, Professor Dariusz Stola, Director of the Museum of the History of Polish Jews and Professor Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, Program Director of the Core Exhibition.

The following morning, after remarks by Professor Antony Polonsky, Chief Historian of the Museum’s Core Exhibition, participants had the opportunity to join a variety of workshops including ones led by Professors Marcin Wodzinski and  Michał Bilewicz, Rafał Pankowski, Ph. D. and Museum curator Ewa Małkowska-Bieniek on the topics of Hassidism, anti-Semitism, prewar Warsaw Jewry, and more.

In the afternoon, participants went on walking tours of the Muranów district, visiting former Warsaw Ghetto sites, led by guides from the Taube Center for the Renewal of Jewish Life in Poland. Next, the group listened to moving accounts of wartime suffering and rescue by Anna Bando and Józef Walaszczyk, president and vice president of the Association of Polish Righteous Among the Nations and Joanna Sobolewska-Pyz, president of the Association of Children of the Holocaust in Poland in a meeting led by Monika Koszyńska from the Museum’s Education Department.

The next evening, a screening of Aftermath was followed by a discussion of the film facilitated by Professor Stanisław Krajewski and joined by Professor Michał Bilewicz, Krzysztof Persak, Ph. D., lead actor Maciej Stuhr and Dariusz Jabłonski, the film’s producer.  

The Facing History and Ourselves visit was a great success and launched what is sure to be a fruitful partnership between the organization and the Museum!