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Press release


  • 14 January 2005
  • Holocaust Memorial Day marks death camp liberations


    Liberation of the Floha Concentration Camp

    Liberation of the Floha Concentration Camp

    The liberation of the Nazi concentration camps 60 years ago and the aftermath of the Holocaust will be remembered at this year's Holocaust Memorial Day event at the University of Sussex on Wednesday 26 January.

    In keeping with the national theme of "survivors, liberation and rebuilding lives", the Sussex event will include a talk by Holocaust survivor Jan Imich. Jan was born in Krakow, Poland. After the German invasion he was hidden from the Nazis by friends of his parents. He will speak about his experiences as a 'hidden child' in Krakow, and of the bravery of the Poles who hid him until he was denounced and captured by the Nazis. He spent the rest of the war in concentration and labour camps. He survived the war and was able to come to England, where he resumed his education, went to university, and enjoyed a happy and fulfilling career and family life.

    The day's themes will be explored further by internationally acclaimed historian and writer Eva Hoffman. She will speak about issues of memory and rebuilding lives, themes that have dominated the lives of Holocaust survivors and their families since 1945 and continue to do so today. She is the author of Lost in Translation: A Life in a New Language, Exit Into History: A Journey Through the New Eastern Europe and Shtetl: The History of a Small Town and an Extinguished World.

    The University-wide event, which is organised by the University's Centre for German-Jewish Studies in conjunction with the Leo Baeck Institute, London and the Wiener Library, was the first of its kind to be held in this country. Now in its fifth year, it remains unique. Entry is free and it is open to the public as well as the University community. University of Sussex Vice-Chancellor Professor Alasdair Smith and Director for German-Jewish Studies, Dr Raphael Gross, will open the proceedings at 2pm in the lecture theatre of the Brighton and Sussex Medical School on the University's Falmer Campus.

    The Sussex event continues to grow and provide focus and reflection on the atrocities that claimed the lives of millions of Jews, Gypsies/Roma, Communists and others across Europe. Chana Moshenska, Director of Educational Programmes at the Centre for German-Jewish Studies, says: "We need to remember the victims of the Nazis, murdered because of racism and hatred. Our mistreatment of refugees and travellers shows that here in Britain we are in danger of failing to learn the lessons of the Holocaust."

    National Holocaust Memorial Day is actually 27 January, the anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration camp, Auschwitz.

     

    Notes for editors 

    The Sussex Holocaust Memorial Day is sponsored by the Association of Jewish Refugees, see www.ajr.org.uk and supported by NATFHE, the university and college lecturers' union, see www.natfhe.org.uk

    Photograph courtesy of the Wiener Library. For more information see www.wienerlibrary.co.uk

    To find out more about the Centre for German-Jewish Studies at Sussex, see http://www.sussex.ac.uk/Units/cgjs/

    Press office contacts: For interviews/photographs, contact Maggie Clune or Jacqui Bealing. Tel 01273 678 888, M.T.Clune@sussex.ac.uk or j.a.bealing@sussex.ac.uk

     

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