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Monday, October 19, 2015
Dead Loop, a new book written by Holocaust survivor Moris Bronshteyn, was born out of a promise he made to the other survivors he interviewed for USC Shoah Foundation.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Professor Roy Schwartzman is proof that you don’t need to be a historian to make full use of the Visual History Archive in teaching and research.
Thursday, July 23, 2015
Lire en françaisTess Gagnage has embarked on a fascinating study of Polish persecution of Jews before and during the Holocaust through the lens of French-language survivor testimony in the Visual History Archive.Gagnage is a master’s candidate in contemporary history at ENS Lyon, which became the first Visual History Archive full access site in France in 2014. Through the Institute’s French liaison Emmanuel Debono, Gagnage learned of the Visual History Archive and decided to conduct her own study of the testimonies.
Monday, August 17, 2015
While her fellow indexers focused on mainly English-language testimonies in USC Shoah Foundation’s new collection from Jewish Family and Children’s Services (JFCS) of San Francisco, Svetlana Ushakova indexed testimonies of Holocaust survivors from her native Russia – who at times felt like her own friends.With a PhD in Russian History from Novosibirsk University, Ushakova joined the JFCS collection with expertise in pre-war Soviet history, though she had not worked very closely with oral history testimonies before.
Thursday, March 12, 2015
Tenth grade world history teacher Joseph Christensen, from Northwest Career and Technical Academy in Las Vegas, is an avid user of IWitness after discovering it a year ago.Last year he attended a professional development program about teaching Holocaust in the classroom. One of the presenters showed the IWitness website and database and explained how he used it in his classroom. After searching through the website, Christensen decided to also give it a try.
Thursday, August 6, 2015
Professor and Holocaust scholar Kenneth Waltzer has no trouble coming up with topics to research in the Visual History Archive.There’s his current study of the rescue of the children and youths at Buchenwald, or his investigation of the brick mason school in Auschwitz. Or there’s the project he just started a few weeks ago researching how many of the boys liberated from Buchenwald went on to serve in the Palmuch underground army in Israel. No matter what, he says, “if you know the material and you can get into it, you can find all kinds of ways to research in the testimonies.”
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
Indexing USC Shoah Foundation’s new testimony collection from Jewish Family and Children’s Services (JFCS) of San Francisco was an ideal continuation of the work Nancy Saul has done for much of her career.Saul spent 10 years as the reference and information services librarian at the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles and also ran the center’s “Ask a Survivor” outreach program, so she was no stranger to testimony when she began working on the JFCS collection at USC Shoah Foundation in January 2014.
Monday, May 11, 2015
The second annual Greenberg Research Fellowship has been awarded to Julia Werner, a PhD candidate in history at Humboldt University, Berlin, who will combine testimony with her study of photography of occupied Poland during World War II.
Monday, May 4, 2015
(Pickhan, left, and Bothe)USC Shoah Foundation has chosen its 2015 Teaching Fellows: Gertrud Pickhan and Alina Bothe, who will develop a seminar course as well as a public exhibition on the deportation of Polish Jews from Berlin at Freie Universität.Teaching Fellows receive a $2,000 stipend and $500 for course materials, and work with USC Shoah Foundation staff to develop their course. Their syllabi are published on the USC Shoah Foundation website, and fellows are expected to give a public presentation of their course at the end of the fellowship period.
Friday, April 17, 2015
Watch Henry Rosmarin’s full testimony from the Visual History Archive as part of Comcast’s Days of Remembrance: PastFORWARD broadcast April 15-June 1, 2015. The sound of a harmonica usually brings to mind playfulness, joy, a sense of merriment. For Henry Rosmarin, it is also conjures the darkest chapter of his life, when his talent for music earned him favor with a Nazi commandant and kept him alive in a German concentration camp.
Friday, August 14, 2015
Zach Albert’s journey to USC Shoah Foundation to work as an indexer on the Jewish Family and Children’s Services (JFCS) of San Francisco Holocaust testimony collection began when he was 12 years old and preparing for his bar mitzvah.Albert was volunteering at the Dallas Holocaust Museum and had become totally captivated by the survivors he met there – they were like his surrogate grandparents, he said. When it came time for him to decide on a community service project for his bar mitzvah, he noticed that the museum was lacking something important: a Torah scroll.
Friday, May 1, 2015
Watch Alice Herz Sommer’s full testimony from the Visual History Archive as part of Comcast’s Days of Remembrance: PastFORWARD broadcast April 15-June 1, 2015.Perhaps no musical Holocaust survivor is more well-known and beloved than Alice Herz Sommer.
Friday, June 5, 2015
USC Shoah Foundation’s first-ever Texas A&M teaching fellow Adam R. Seipp is drawing on the Visual History Archive to help him fill some pretty big shoes.Seipp, a professor of history, will be taking over Texas A&M’s Introduction to the Holocaust course following the retirement of beloved Professor Arnold Krammer. The course is one of the most popular at the school, so teaching it is an incredible responsibility, Seipp said – but, he’ll do it with the support of the A.I. and Manet Schepps Foundation Teaching Fellow program.
Friday, May 22, 2015
Watch Judith Goldstein’s full testimony from the Visual History Archive as part of Comcast’s Days of Remembrance: PastFORWARD broadcast April 15-June 1, 2015. From her childhood in Vilna, Poland, to her adult life in the United States, the arts have rarely been very far from Judith Goldstein.
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Watch Shony Braun’s full testimony from the Visual History Archive as part of Comcast’s Days of Remembrance: PastFORWARD broadcast April 15-June 1, 2015.In the forests of Romania in 1934, four-year-old Shony Braun was out for a walk with his babysitter when he wandered off and became lost. A gypsy woman, hearing his cries and not knowing who he was or where he belonged, took him to the gypsy camp for safety. Upon their arrival, Shony’s attention was utterly transfixed by something: a violin. It was the most beautiful sound he had ever heard.
Friday, February 20, 2015
Rosa Lamb teaches 11th and 12th grade Global Studies: Holocaust and Genocide at Lake View High School in Chicago.How do you use IWitness in your class?I used it last year to have students make an IWitness video. The students created videos used for the purpose of teaching others about a specific theme or topic of the Holocaust. What kinds of reactions do students have to watching testimony?
Wednesday, September 9, 2015
Attendees of the 2015 Ambassadors for Humanity gala in Detroit on Thursday will get to hear remarks from a Michigan educator who is one of USC Shoah Foundation’s most passionate colleagues.
Monday, February 23, 2015
Adam Herceg, a Teaching with Testimony in the 21st Century graduate from Slovakia, marked International Holocaust Remembrance Day at his school on January 27 by showing testimony of a survivor his students already felt a strong connection to.
Monday, August 3, 2015
When Rob Hadley joined 10 other teachers for the IWitness Teaching Fellowship in July, it was far from his first time creating testimony-based lessons and activities.
Thursday, February 12, 2015
Vicki Kessler’s students watch testimonies in IWitness to practice their French, and to enhance their study of the Holocaust and genocide.
Friday, June 26, 2015
USC Shoah Foundation began digitizing Holocaust testimony collections from Holocaust museums across North America last year as part of its Preserving the Legacy initiative. Ever since then, special staff members like Kadie Seitz have been hard at work indexing those thousands of testimonies in preparation for their integration into the Visual History Archive.
Wednesday, September 2, 2015
Professor Alejandro Baer, now from the University of Minnesota, was first attracted to USC Shoah Foundation in 2000, when it was titled Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation and was deep into its project to collect 50,000 testimonies of Holocaust survivors around the world.
Monday, March 23, 2015
Alice Herscovitch first became Executive Director of the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre in 2007, and it didn’t take long for her realize the incredible untapped resource that was the MHMC’s collection of 550 Holocaust survivor testimonies.“I knew we had an extraordinary collection, but for what?” Herscovitch recalled. “Why did we record these if we’re not going to do something with them?”
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Dawn Skorczewski started out studying the role of the interviewer in Holocaust survivor testimony, but before long, she was captivated by the Visual History Archive’s great wealth of material on survivors from the Netherlands.
Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Nearly six months after traveling to Poland with USC Shoah Foundation, Soljane Quiles is getting back on a plane and heading to Los Angeles for another program: the first-ever IWitness Teacher Fellowship.At The Highlander Charter School in Rhode Island, Quiles currently teaches 9th and 10th grade history and has been a featured community panelist and award recipient for her dedication to civics education.
Monday, August 10, 2015
Thursday’s event to celebrate the completion of indexing the Institute’s new collection from Jewish Family and Children’s Services (JFCS) of San Francisco was the culmination of not just a year and a half, but eight years of work on the collection for indexer Debbie Kahn.
Tuesday, October 27, 2015
After spending three years studying and working in Armenia, Manuk Avedikyan is applying his passion for Armenian culture and history to USC Shoah Foundation’s new Armenian Genocide collection.Avedikyan is currently working with program administrator Hrag Yedalian on indexing the collection, which launched in the Visual History Archive on April 24, 2015, the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. Ninety testimonies are already indexed and viewable in the archive; Avedikyan expects to finish indexing the remaining 300 by this spring.
Friday, November 20, 2015
The stories are truly harrowing.One man watched as his house was burned down – with his baby brother inside. Another man’s grandfather literally died protecting him from attacking soldiers, and women tried to make themselves “ugly” so they wouldn’t be raped.These are survivors of the 1937 Nanjing Massacre that USC Shoah Foundation interviewed for its Nanjing Massacre collection in the Visual History Archive. Since 2014, a total of 30 interviews have been collected and integrated into the Visual History Archive.
Thursday, January 8, 2015
As School Library Media Specialist at Clark Mills Elementary School in Manalapan, New Jersey, Gail Murray introduces not just one class each year but many to USC Shoah Foundation testimony in order to supplement their learning about the Holocaust.Murray wanted to complement the fourth- and fifth grade units on the Holocaust with age-appropriate content in the library, so she researched possible websites, literature and videos that would enhance what they are learning in their classrooms. She said she felt that she “hit gold” when she found USC Shoah Foundation and IWitness.
Tuesday, July 21, 2015
Jonathan Friedman’s class at West Chester University in Pennsylvania is nearly finished with the culminating project of their study of the Holocaust in film: a documentary they constructed in IWitness.Friedman, who is currently Professor and Director of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at West Chester University, first learned of IWitness at the Association for Holocaust Organizations (AHO)’s annual conference in January 2015 at USC. He also served as a consulting historian at USC Shoah Foundation, then-titled Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation, from 1997-2000.

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