17th Annual Symposium on the Holocaust and Genocide


“Overcoming Fear of the Other is the theme of the 17th annual Kleinmann Family Foundation Symposium on the Holocaust and Genocide at Vanier. The underlying aim of the Symposium is to inform young people about discrimination, racism and genocide in their many manifestations, and to help them learn about history in order to avoid repeating mistakes of the past. Eyewitness and first-hand accounts are often the best motivators to spark students into awareness, concern and action, and we are fortunate to have among us Holocaust survivors and one rescuer to offer their stirring personal testimonies. This year’s lineup of presenters also includes a number of young people involved in exposing post-Holocaust genocides in Cambodia, Darfur and elsewhere. An exhibit, “About Auschwitz,” by photographer and ex-Vanier teacher Judith Lermer Crawley will be mounted in the Carrefour, and a display on Jasenovac will be outside the Library. One of the main strengths of the Symposium, in my view, is the way important real-life lessons about ethical citizenship and moral courage find their way into the classroom. Participating students and teachers alike wrestle with these challenges in the context of their courses in psychology, sociology, English, Humanities, journalism, and history. All events listed below take place in ongoing classes; they are open to all, but seating may be limited. As always, we are grateful for the generous support of the VCTA and VCSA and the teamwork of many services within the Vanier community.” – Neil Caplan