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Names Not Numbers At YU

Dr. Michael Berenbaum at YU High School for Boys

Dr. Michael Berenbaum at YU High School for Boys

Acclaimed Holocaust scholar and award-winning film producer Dr. Michael Berenbaum returned to the Marsha Stern Talmudical Academy/Yeshiva University High School for Boys to instruct the seniors on technique and the gravity and privilege of interviewing and filming Holocaust survivors as part of the Names Not Numbers program. “We are at a transitional moment,” said Berenbaum. “You are of the last generation to be in the presence of survivors. Cherish it and do something important with it.”

The program was developed in 2003 by Tova Rosenberg, director of Hebrew-language studies at the Yeshiva University High Schools. Students learn skills to produce videos of oral histories of Holocaust survivors that are then compiled into a documentary film to preserve their testimonies. Hundreds of students, survivors, and World War II veterans have participated in the program to date. “They had the courage to recreate life,” said Berenbaum of the Holocaust survivors, offering the students guidance as he has for the past six years. “Keep a sympathetic poker face,” he stressed. “Figure out a question that elicits the experience. Ask about before, during, and after. Before they were victims, they were people.”

He added, “Listen, listen, listen.”

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Posted by on February 12, 2015. Filed under In This Week's Edition. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.