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11 December 2017

Neuberger HEW2017 Reached New Heights

The Neuberger's Holocaust Education Week 2017 explored pivotal moments of the post-Holocaust era that have shaped our understanding of the Holocaust.

Niklas Frank in conversation with Caryn Lieberman. Photo by Michael Rajzman for the Neuberger.

Holocaust Education Week 2017, presented by the Neuberger Holocaust Education Centre in Toronto on November 2 featured a scintillating discussion between Niklas Frank and broadcast journalist Caryn Lieberman. The son of the notorious Governor General of Nazi-occupied Poland Hans Frank (1900-1946), Niklas spoke openly and candidly about his father’s role in the Holocaust.

A capacity audience of 1400 people filled Adath Israel synagogue to hear Niklas Frank and Caryn Lieberman discuss his legacy as the sole living child of Hans and Brigitte Frank. Sharing archival photographs that illustrated his upbringing as well as his father’s involvement in the crimes of National Socialism riveted the audience. It was a thoughtful and powerful opening to a week of intensive learning opportunities.

Curated on the theme of pivotal moments, HEW2017  offered a diverse range of programming including international speakers, a feature film series, specialised programming for young professionals, and the first hand testimony  of Holocaust survivors. Among the international presenters were Dr. Roman Toeppel from Munich, Germany who discussed the Critical Edition of Mein Kampf and the reasons why this new version was published by the Institute for Contemporary History in Germany, Dr. Kori Street who discussed using the recorded testimony of Holocaust survivors in the classroom, and Prof. Jeffrey Shandler of Rutgers University who presented on depictions of the Holocaust in television and film.

HEW2017 Closing Night at Beth Torah Synagogue with Dr. Danielle Spera. Photo by Michael Rajzman for the Neuberger.

Dr. Danielle Spera, director of the Jewish Museum Vienna closed the week long event with a poignant discussion on the role of the museum not only as a repository for artefacts and archives, but as a place of community and vitality. More than 900 people were captivated by her detailed account of Jewish life in Vienna and its rich history. In synagogues, churches, mosques, community centres, libraries, schools and other venues across the Greater Toronto Area, people took part in this annual learning opportunity to engage in a deep and meaningful way with the history of the Holocaust.


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Carson Phillips Ph.D.

Written byCarson Phillips Ph.D.

Carson Phillips holds a Ph.D. in Humanities from York University, Toronto, Canada and is Managing Director of the Neuberger Holocaust Education Centre. He served as a Canadian delegate to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance from 2009-2014 and currently continues as an advisor to the Funding Review Committee. In addition, he is an adjunct faculty member at Graz College, USA.

He is the recipient of numerous scholarly awards including the 2013 BMW Canada Award for Excellence from the Canadian Centre for German and European Studies. His research interests focus on post-Holocaust conceptualisations of gender, Väterliteratur and cultural representations of the Holocaust in screen and visual culture.