This podcast series features excerpts from interviews with Holocaust survivors presented at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's public program, First Person -- Conversations with Holocaust Survivors.
Holocaust Survivors’ Reflections and Hopes for the Future
In today's episode, Holocaust survivors share their thoughts on the importance of speaking about their experiences. It is our tradition at First Person that each guest speaker ends the program with their "final words." In our final podcast of the series, we close with those thoughts, reflections, and hopes for the future.
Estelle Laughlin: The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising
Estelle Laughlin discusses the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, when German forces, intending to liquidate the ghetto on April 19, 1943, were stunned by an armed uprising from Jewish fighters. Estelle and her family hid in an underground bunker during the uprising but were eventually captured and deported.
Theodora Klayman: Shelter in Ludbreg
Theodora (Dora) Klayman discusses surviving the war in hiding with her brother in Ludbreg, Yugoslavia. After her parents were deported in 1941, she spent the war first with her maternal aunt and then, after her aunt was denounced and deported, with non-Jewish neighbors.
Steven Fenves: Neighbors in Subotica
Steven Fenves discusses being forced into a ghetto immediately following the German occupation of his hometown of Subotica, Yugoslavia, in March 1944. As his family was forced out of their home, they encountered a range of responses from their non-Jewish neighbors.
Alfred Münzer: Difficult Decisions in the Occupied Netherlands
Alfred Munzer discusses the difficult decisions his parents, Dutch Jews, had to make after learning in early 1941 that they were expecting a child. Germany had invaded the Netherlands in May 1940 and conditions were growing increasingly difficult for Jews by the time Al was born.
Josiane Traum: Hiding in a Convent in Brugge
Josiane (Josy) Traum discusses her memories of life in hiding at a Carmelite convent in Brugge, Belgium. In 1942, as conditions grew increasingly more dangerous for Jews living in German-occupied Belgium, her mother, Fanny, arranged to have Belgian nuns hide her three-year-old daughter in the convent.
I am in love with this, it is so good! It’s for all ages. I am a middle schooler so I am not very old but I love it. You should listen to it.
Such moving stories
This podcast does it less than most, but I didn’t give 5 stars because I cannot stand when an interviewer interrupts a Holocaust Survivor. I understand the need to lead the “conversation”, but the guy interviewer ruins it by not letting what the survivor has just said sunk in before he butts in asking a dumb question.
I have listened to the entire series since finding this podcast earlier on the week. Hearing so many people's stories back-to-back has helped me get a better feel for the scope and magnitude of WW2 devastation in Europe. As an American born in the 1960s, these stories describe a world as alien to me as Pluto. But thanks to the courage of these generous, gifted speakers, I gain understanding of how this insane war was possible and how it unfolded.
These speakers also give me the greatest hope for humanity because they proved that even in the depths of hell, we are capable of surviving without losing our humanity and dignity. They have set the bar high and it is our job to raise ourselves to their level. I am deeply grateful to these speakers for sharing their very important experiences and memories.
This podcast has made me want to visit the museum in DC. I hope to hear a survivor speak there. I also hope this podcast is continued.