Holocaust Film from Yale Premiers in Poland

A documentary produced by Yale University’s Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies and edited by Yale archivist Joanne Rudof had a premiere screening in Czestochowa, Poland, as part of a ground-breaking exhibition.

In the film, seven Holocaust survivors from Czestochowa describe their lives before, during and after the war. They describe how they were affected by the German invasion and the subsequent creation of a ghetto in their city, followed by deportation, mass murder, slave labor in German factories, liberation by the Soviet army and the bitter aftermath of the war.

The film is based on material in the Fortunoff Video Archive, which has 4,300 eye-witness accounts, including 99 from individuals who lived in Czestochowa. The collection is part of Manuscripts and Archives, housed at Sterling Memorial Library at Yale University.

Czestochowa was a major center of Jewish life in Poland, dating back to the 1700s and ending with the Holocaust. Some 40,000 Jews lived in the city before the rise of Nazism. To commemorate that history, a major exhibition titled “The Jews of Czestochowa” was assembled and will be on display in Czestochowa through July 21, after which it will travel to Warsaw, Krakow and Wroclaw. This is the first exhibition ever mounted of a once-vibrant Jewish community that was an integral part of an important Polish city.

To learn more about this documentary or the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, contact Rudof at 203-432-1880.

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Media Contact

Gila Reinstein: gila.reinstein@yale.edu, 203-432-1325