Institute News

After 80 years, Kristallnacht still relevant

It’s been 80 years since Kristallnacht, a pogrom organized by Nazis against Jews in Germany and Austria, but as we’ve seen in recent weeks, the threat of antisemitic violence remains a horrifying possibility.

Orchestrated by Nazis on Nov. 9 and 10, 1938, Kristallnacht, or Night of the Broken Glass, is seen by many historians as one of the first steps in the Holocaust.  During the rampage, 1,400 synagogues and 7,000 businesses were destroyed. Almost 100 Jews were killed and 30,000 more were arrested and sent to concentration camps.

USC Shoah Foundation remains committed to learning from those events and sharing its lessons with young people around the world.

The Institute’s Center for Advanced Genocide Research recently concluded a successful academic conference that focused on the events of 1938. “New Perspectives on Kristallnacht: After 80 Years, the Nazi Pogrom in Global Comparison” gathered 22 international scholars who discussed the most recent scholarship on the event, its reverberations and its legacy.

The Institute also offers many educational opportunities related to Kristallnacht. In 2016, IWitness educator Jennifer Goss offered five resources to teach about Kristallnacht with testimony.