Arts & Culture


The Memorial de la Shoah

PARISThe recently unveiled Memorial de la Shoah in Le Marais, the fashionable Paris neighborhood that witnessed massive deportations of Jews during World War II, is — as its patrons and advocates like to point out — Europe’s oldest Holocaust memorial. In a sense, it was inaugurated in 1943, when a Russian Jewish emigre named Isaac SchneersonRead More


NAZARETH

By Noga Tarnopolsky

“The first Arab museum of the Holocaust,” as it is touted, somewhat tentatively in the Israeli press, is in fact a hopeful shot in the dark fired off by a single man: the Israeli-Arab attorney Khaled Mahmid, 43, whose education at Hebrew University opened his eyes to the horrors of the Holocaust in a way an Arabic education in Israel didRead More


LOS ANGELES

By Nathaniel Popper

Apparently, a museum dedicated to tragedy does not have to leave out friendliness and fun. A guide gives each visitor to the Museum of Tolerance a personal introduction, with a second welcome provided by an electronic host composed of television screens, all explaining that, deep down, everyone is prejudiced.The first few rooms of the museum putRead More


LONDON

London’s main Holocaust exhibit is neither Britain’s largest nor even a free-standing structure. (Both those distinctions go to the Beth Shalom Holocaust Centre in Nottinghamshire.) The Holocaust Exhibition at the Imperial War Museum, on London’s South Bank, spans two floors within a broader exhibit on Britain’s military prowess, itsRead More


BERLIN

By Nathaniel Popper

In the city where Nazis plotted the extermination of the Jews, the recently built Jewish Museum runs like a jagged scar across the still-recovering metropolis. The museum is ostensibly dedicated to the entire history of Jews in Germany, but the architecture leaves little question that in Berlin, the policies of the Nazi government invariablyRead More


Auschwitz

By Nathaniel Popper

Walking under the metal gate that reads “Arbeit Macht Frei” (“Work Brings Freedom”) is a seminal moment for visitors to Auschwitz — a chill-inducing passage into a place of death. It comes as some surprise, then, to learn that it was actually upon passing the ticket-takers’ booth in the parking lot that visitors enteredRead More


WASHINGTON

By Ami Eden

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has been widely hailed as a critical and popular success, drawing rave reviews and attracting 21.6 million visitors since its opening in 1993. More important than any of the first-rate exhibitions, however, was the decision to make the museum a federal institution and build it on the National Mall inRead More


In Memoriam

By Noga Tarnopolsky

Last month, Yad Vashem, widely viewed as the first and most recognizable Holocaust museum in the world, inaugurated a completely redesigned new building. The project seems to have been propelled, at least in part, by the proliferation of regional museums and curated spaces devoted to memorializing the Holocaust. In honor of Yom HaShoah,Read More


‘Chassidic’ Jazzman Strives for Authenticity

By Alexander Gelfand

In music, as in any art, intention and biography can be tricky things. For example, should Richard Wagner’s antisemitism be considered when judging his work? Is it fair to take the composer’s controversial writings into account when evaluating his operas? And does the value of his art really depend on the kind of person he was?Drummer ReubenRead More


Treif Wasn’t Always Non-kosher

By Peretz Rodman

Of all the words contributed by the Yiddish language to modern American English, “kosher” is one of the more common — and, as a term neither coarse nor derisive, an exception to a general rule. American dictionaries frequently also list its antonym, treif (spelled with or without the “i”), defining it as “not kosher and hence forbiddenRead More


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