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Thursday, October 1, 2015
By Eric LindbergUSC School of Social WorkAs an adoptee from Taiwan growing up in San Antonio, Texas, Priscilla Hefley struggled to find her identity.To avoid being seen as an outsider, she embraced the mainstream culture. It wasn’t until college that she began to reconnect with her roots and what it meant to be a Chinese American.“Adoptees can have a sense of not really being American and not really being Chinese,” she said. “It was a real struggle. Where exactly do I fit?”
Friday, October 23, 2015
During one of the most joyous times in her life, 13-year-old Mia Michaels decided to honor the survivors and victims of one of the darkest periods in history. Mia’s parents, Larry Michaels and Tamar Elkeles, have been USC Shoah Foundation donors for over 10 years, and her grandfather Gidon Elkeles fled Nazi Germany at age three while many other relatives were killed in the Holocaust. When it came time for her to decide on a project for her bat mitzvah, she wanted to connect to her family history and learn about how her past is part of her future, Tamar said.
Monday, February 8, 2016
How do we begin to remember the millions of victims of the biggest genocide in human history? How do we echo the gravity of the world’s loss to students? How do we work to create a meaningful moment that memorializes humankind’s greatest tragedy? In planning a Holocaust unit in conjunction with Holocaust Remembrance Day commemorations, these are questions that were prevalent in our minds as we devised a memorial program that paid tribute while emphasizing the need for continued human rights education in classroom’s across the world.
Thursday, January 21, 2016
Los Angeles, January 21, 2016 – To meet growing demand for access to the world’s largest archive of genocide testimony, USC Shoah Foundation – The Institute for Visual History and Education announces its Visual History Archive Program, which will reimagine how users connect to the testimonies.Made possible by an initial transformative donation from Lee Liberman, a member of the Institute’s Board of Councilors Executive Committee, the wide-ranging, five-year plan will look to:
Wednesday, March 16, 2016
Some 72 years after he fought with an American unit that helped liberate France during World War II, journalist Tom Tugend has received France’s highest civilian honor.Tugend and nine other veterans were honored in a ceremony on March 9. Tugend was appointed as Chevalier (Knight) in the National Order of the Legion of Honor for his service in the U.S. infantry in Alsace, attached to the 1st French Army in its fight against Germany.
Wednesday, May 11, 2016
In just a few days, I’ll be graduating with my bachelors in International Relations from USC. As I sit here writing this piece, I have a chance to reflect on these three years of fundamental personal and academic growth, and in particular, on my incredibly rewarding intern experience at USC Shoah Foundation.
Thursday, June 30, 2016
A trio of eighth-graders from New Jersey created a poetry group that has enabled students at their school to express their hardships and appreciation for one another.
Monday, August 1, 2016
Robert J. Katz, one of USC Shoah Foundation’s most dedicated and long-term supporters, has announced his retirement from USC Shoah Foundation’s Board of Councilors, and that he will remain chair emeritus on the board for the next three years.
Tuesday, September 6, 2016
As an educator who has used IWitness to teach various subjects, units and topics here are some tips to integrating testimony into any curriculum, including Science.
Tuesday, November 15, 2016
More than a year after the 2015 gala to honor that year’s chosen humanitarian for his leadership and corporate citizenry around education and community, the ties between USC Shoah Foundation and the Detroit community have never been stronger.
Friday, December 2, 2016
For six months this spring and summer, I had the pleasure of leading a team of staff and volunteers facilitating the beta run of New Dimensions in Testimony (NDT) from USC Shoah Foundation at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC. I watched people of all ages approach the giant monitor displaying an image of Holocaust survivor Pinchas Gutter, first with trepidation, then curiosity, then, at last, affection. Here are a few things that I learned about technology and humanity from the project.
Monday, December 19, 2016
The contest is open to all secondary students, asking them to watch clips of testimony from the Visual History Archive and create artistic comic strip-style pieces inspired by the stories they heard.
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
In the field of genocide studies and human rights, storytelling is the most impactful way to give information weight. And the first step to doing justice to the stories and the survivors who provide their testimonies is ensuring they’re translated accurately and with context.
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Since October, once a month, every month, a group of grade school students have met either virtually or physically at the USC Shoah Foundation Institute for Visual History and Education’s home at USC’s Leavey Library. These students are USC Shoah Foundation’s newest crop of Junior Interns, there to study what attitudes breed hatred and intolerance, how they can spread positive moral authority and be an active participant in civil society using the weight of testimony from the Visual History Archive.
Thursday, April 6, 2017
Amann will research the women who participated in the Nuremberg Trials and other major criminal trials in the aftermath of World War II.
Thursday, April 13, 2017
As a little kid, Toni Nickel never could settle between Sesame Street and the History Channel, her interest in other people’s stories of war piqued such that learning the colors and the order of the numbers became forever secondary. Her curiosity – specifically in the Holocaust – came to a head in college when she took a History of the Holocaust course that used the USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive. There, in a classroom at Texas A&M University, Nickel knew her fate and future were sealed.
Friday, April 14, 2017
Colin is thought to have the distinction of being the first survivor to speak on camera, just after liberation from Bergen-Belsen, which happened to be her 22nd birthday.
Tuesday, May 2, 2017
Museum visitors can now interact with the testimonies of Holocaust survivors Sam Harris, Aaron Elster and Fritzie Fritzshall, in addition to Pinchas Gutter, three weekends a month from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Friday, May 12, 2017
USC Shoah Foundation will present its interactive media projects to some of the brightest minds in technology at the prestigious Code Conference, hosted by Vox Media, in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., May 30-June 1.
Tuesday, May 30, 2017
Los Angeles, May 25, 2017 – USC Shoah Foundation – The Institute for Visual History and Education has partnered with the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU) to integrate all videos from the AGBU WebTalks series—addressing both the Armenian Genocide and Armenian identity—into USC Shoah Foundation’s award-winning IWitness educational website.
Monday, June 12, 2017
A group of students from Chicago who inspired their fellow students to embrace each other’s unique identity has won the 2017 IWitness Video Challenge sponsored by USC Shoah Foundation.
Friday, July 7, 2017
During his two-week internship at USC Shoah Foundation this summer, Ohio 10th grader Dov Ratner is testing the latest New Dimensions in Testimony interviews by asking the computer system questions for each survivor and noting the accuracy of the responses he receives in return. But there’s one interviewee he doesn’t need New Dimensions in Testimony to have a conversation with: Holocaust survivor Renee Firestone, his great-grandmother.
Thursday, August 17, 2017
When I visited Nazi death camps in 2014, I viewed spaces filled with the spirits of so many lives lost and witnessed the end result of evil, intolerance, and hatred. I left the gas chambers at Auschwitz and Majdanek that summer thinking that the sick, twisted ideology that drove the Nazis and was fueled by hatred and ignorance no longer existed in the 21st Century, especially in the United States. I naively believed Nazi ideology had ceased to exist with the end of World War II and the Holocaust.
Tuesday, September 5, 2017
Each week, we will profile a scholar who will present his or her research at the Center for Advanced Genocide Research's upcoming conference Digital Approaches to Genocide Studies, Oct. 23-24, 2017.
Monday, September 18, 2017
Maria Zalewska grew up in what acclaimed writer and journalist Martin Pollack calls the “contaminated landscapes” of Eastern Europe, where most of the Nazi concentration camps and extermination camps were built. Her physical proximity to spaces of the Shoah, as well as her familial relationships to victims of Auschwitz-Birkenau, drew her initially toward the study of the different ways in which Eastern Europeans filled, organized and produced spaces of memory.
Thursday, October 5, 2017
As news continues to develop about the fate of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, educators can draw on resources from USC Shoah Foundation to help humanize the struggles faced by young immigrants throughout history.
Monday, October 16, 2017
For many survivors of the Holocaust, persecution began in the hometown, where greed may have swayed perceived friends and neighbors to unspeakable actions. The inhabitance of formerly Jewish-owned apartments by non-Jewish tenants in the early 1940s, specifically in Paris, provides a strong case study of this phenomenon and the basis of a research project developed by Eric Le Bourhis of the Institute for Political Sciences, Nanterre (France).
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
There are no certain guides for rebuilding a society in the aftermath of systematic violence and genocide against one of its populations and its culture. Nevertheless, some societies address their histories more effectively than others, as found by Anika Walke, a German expat working as an assistant professor of History at Washington University in St. Louis.
Thursday, October 19, 2017
Twelve years after the last federally operated Indian Residential School closed in 1996, the government of Canada apologized to the system’s survivors. They’d been put through so much they hadn’t deserved, from forced removals from their families and communities to deprivations of food, their ancestral languages, adequate sanitation; from forced labor and adherence to the Christian faith to physical abuse.
Friday, October 20, 2017
Archaeology is like a protracted police investigation, wherein your evidence is precious because it is sparing and you’re lucky if you have a lot of witnesses. Caroline Sturdy Colls, an associate professor of Forensic Archaeology and Genocide Investigation at Staffordshire and founder of their Centre of Archaeology, knows this with certainty, having long worked in both the fields of genocide research and homicide investigation.

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