A concise and relevant Holocaust compendium for classrooms
Why Should I Care? Lessons from the Holocaust by Jeanette Friedman and David Gold; The Wordsmithy, LLC 2009; 263 pages
By Marcia Tatz Wollner
With the myriad of selections of books about the history of the period, biographies etc., this book is a succinct compilation of history which includes short biographical sketches and incorporates pop culture. The bibliography sites internet sources, relevant video clips from StarWars, Twilight Zone and Harry Potter as well as current popular music.
The authors make the teaching of the Holocaust relevant to the reader by making the correlation to contemporary events,eg. Rwanda, Darfur and the murder of Kitty Genovese (1964) etc. in order for students to take an active role in combatting discrimination and encouraging tolerance.
The text is also anchored in a basis of character development. By understanding people’s behavior, one may be able to better understand the actions of the perpetrators, rescuers, and by-standers.
This book, chock full of quotations, some primary documents and concise historical descriptions, is a book which I will use in my Holocaust class and will recommend to other teachers and schools.
Wollner is director of school services and programs of the Agency for Jewish Education in San Diego