UC San Diego: UC San Diego Announces 2021-2022 Holocaust Living History Workshop Series

The University of California San Diego’s Holocaust Living History Workshop (HLHW) is returning this fall with a yearlong series of seven lectures that underscore the theme “Beyond the Great Silence: The Holocaust in Art, Memory, and Life.” Now in its 13th year as a collaborative project between the UC San Diego Library and the UC San Diego Jewish Studies Program, the HLHW aims to broaden understanding of the past, foster tolerance and preserve the memory of victims and survivors of the Holocaust while also emphasizing their continued relevance in the world today.

Each public lecture focuses on individual as well as group responses to the Holocaust and its long aftermath. The innovative approaches employed by featured Holocaust Living History Workshop presenters demonstrate an incontrovertible fact: despite being a focus of scholarship for decades, the Holocaust continues to engage artists, writers, scholars and survivors.

All events are free and open to the public, but registration is required. View the full calendar of events.

“Franci’s War” with Helen Epstein
Wednesday, October 13, 5 p.m. PT, Virtual Event

In the summer of 1942, 22-year-old Franci Rabinek began a three-year journey that would take her from Terezin, the Nazis’ “model ghetto,” to the Czech family camp in Auschwitz-Birkenau, slave labor camps in Hamburg, and finally Bergen Belsen. Trained as a dress designer, Franci survived the war and would go on to establish a fashion salon in New York. “Franci’s War” is her memoir of life in Nazi-occupied Europe.

Rabinek’s daughter, Helen Epstein, a prolific journalist and author, will introduce and discuss the memoir during the event. Besides contributing to major dailies such as the New York Times and the Washington Post, Epstein has published several books, including her highly acclaimed Holocaust trilogy that begins with the volume “Children of the Holocaust.” Her work has been published in numerous languages.

This event is sponsored by Judi Gottschalk. Registration is required.

Drawing Through Trauma: Holocaust Memory and Graphic Novels with Miriam Katin
Wednesday, November 10, 5 p.m. PT, Virtual Event

Among the countless tragic events making up the colossal tragedy of the Shoah, none is more shocking perhaps than the mass deportation of Hungarian Jews in 1944. In just a few short months, more than 440,000 men, women and children were deported to Auschwitz and almost inevitably murdered on arrival. Thanks to false papers, 2-year-old Miriam Katin escaped this gruesome fate.

In 2006, drawing on her mother’s memories of the Holocaust, Katin published “We Are on Our Own,” a graphic novel inspired by Art Spiegelman’s “Maus.” Katin trained as a graphic artist in Israel and is the recipient of the Inkpot Award and the Prix de la critique. Her work has been featured in the 2007 and 2014 volumes of “The Best American Comics.” She will be introduced by Elizabeth Pollard, a historian and founding member of the Comics Studies Collaborative at San Diego State University (SDSU). Pamela Jackson, the popular culture librarian in charge of the Comic Arts archive at SDSU, will provide concluding remarks on the potential of the collection for teaching and research.

This event is sponsored by Daniel and Phyllis Epstein with support from Comics@SDSU. Registration is required.

Mark your calendars and stay tuned for registration details for these additional HLHW 2021-2022 events:

January 19, 2022, 5 p.m. PT: Childhood in Birkenau with George Heimler – The Lou Dunst Memorial Lecture
March 2, 2022, 5 p.m. PT: The Moral Triangle: Germans, Israelis, Palestinians with Sa’ed Atshan and Katharina Galor
April 6, 2022, 5 p.m. PT: Hugo Marcus: A Muslim Jew Under the Swastika
May 4, 2022, 5 p.m. PT: The Labyrinth: The Testimony of Marian Kolodziej – film screening and discussion with Ron Schmidt and Michael Berenbaum – Sponsored by Nancy and Joel Dimsdale
May 25, 2022, 5 p.m. PT: Holocaust Landscapes: The Spatiality of Death and Survival with Tim Cole
In addition to the public lecture series, the HLHW engages local students, teachers, interested community members, and Holocaust survivors and their families through use of USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive. The Archive is the world’s largest online database of videotaped testimonies by Holocaust survivors and witnesses, and the UC San Diego Library is the only institution in the San Diego region to have access to its resources.