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Opening Hours:

Sunday to Thursday: ‬09:00-17:00

Fridays and Holiday eves: ‬09:00-14:00

Yad Vashem is closed on Saturdays and all Jewish Holidays.

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Jews and Culture in Prewar Europe - July 2009

Welcome to the 16th issue of Teaching the Legacy. This edition focuses on the subject of Jews in prewar culture and art. The e-newsletter includes a main article on this theme, as well as articles on prewar culture and antisemitism, and synagogue artwork. As always, the newsletter features new publications, book reviews and updates on recent and upcoming activities at the International School for Holocaust Studies and across Yad Vashem. We hope you find this issue interesting and resourceful and we look forward to your feedback.

"What Came Before" - Teaching About Jewish Life Before the Holocaust

IntroductionThe thriving life of European Jewry prior to World War II cannot be overlooked when embarking on a Holocaust curriculum. This article presents several aspects of Prewar Jewish Life in Europe, central to Holocaust education.

While the rich tapestry of Jewish culture goes far beyond the scope of this article, specific elements of Jewish culture, present at the beginning of the twentieth century, are worth studying and teaching in order to contextualize the Holocaust. While the Holocaust is primarily associated with death and destruction, learning about how Jews lived gives a...
Exterior view of the Chodorow synagogue, prewar

The Wooden Synagogue of Chodorow

“Behold All That Was Painted My Hand Has Wrought”
from the painting signature by Israel ben Mordechai Lissnicki of the community of Yartshov.“Few other places throughout the centuries have witnessed more scholarship, friendship, devotion, humility, charity, love, longing, joy, hope, tears and sorrow, than the rooms enclosed by the shtetl synagogue and the bet midrash.”1A vividly painted lion and a unicorn, sloe-eyed and graceful, face each other as if dancing, front legs entwined. The unicorn’s head is bowed, allowing the lion to blow, trumpet-like, on its horn....
The Third Reich and the Theft of a Musical Legacy

The Third Reich and the Theft of a Musical Legacy

IntroductionOne of the most disturbing aspects of the Third Reich and its unprecedented descent into state-organized mass murder is the transition from a civilized, cultured condition to a virtually unchallenged barbarism. This essay is an attempt to highlight a few points along the route that the highly developed German nation traveled from the mid-19th century over the next one hundred years until the end of the Second World War. We will focus on the German world of music and present several examples of how ideas and ideologies burgeoned into practical policies designed to hijack the impressive...
The Sacrifice of Isaac as a Motif in Holocaust Poetry (Teacher's Guide)

The Sacrifice of Isaac as a Motif in Holocaust Poetry (Teacher's Guide)

The story of the sacrifice of Isaac remains one of the Bible’s most powerful episodes, continually challenging and spurring debate to this day. In this teacher’s guide, we explore its recurrence within postwar Holocaust poetry.
Remnant of the "Maccabi" flag from the Ahrensdorf "Hachshara" (training farm)

The Flag

On the eve of the deportations to the death camps, a group of youths and their counselors participated in a ceremony. In this ceremony, their Hachshara (training camp) flag was cut into twelve pieces and distributed among the counselors. They swore to reunite in the land of Israel and remake the complete flag from its pieces. Ultimately, only three of the twelve leaders would survive the Holocaust, and of these only Anneliese Borinski managed to bring her piece of the flag to the land of Israel.
After the Nazi rise to power in Germany, the Zionist movements increased their efforts...