photo credits: AFS/AFF, Amsterdam/BASEL, courtesy Lenora Hausman
If we forget our history, we will never have a sense of just how much it has changed. To that end, Congregation Havurah Shalom of Sun City, in partnership with the Georgetown Public Library, has brought a new Anne Frank exhibit to the library (402 W 8th St), open now through November 15.
“Let me be myself and then I am satisfied,” Anne wrote in her diary in 1944. In the secret annex where the family hid from the Nazis, Anne dreamed of becoming a writer and journalist after the war. Little did she know what an internationally famous writer she was becoming even then.
But, to the Nazis, Anne Frank was just Jewish, and just another of the 1.5 million children who died as a result of the anti-Semitism of the Nazis and the Holocaust. She was 15.
Lenora Hausman, co-chair of the exhibit says, “This exhibit will be more than just information, it will bring this history to life with photos and videos. The exhibit will provide insight into Anne and her family throughout their lives, as well as how they were affected by the world around them with the rise of Hitler and the Second World War.”
In addition to visual exhibits, the display includes a scale model of the Franks’ hiding place, and a replica of Anne’s famous diary, which has never been out of print since first published in 1947.
“It’s difficult in times like these: ideals, dreams, and cherished hopes rise within us, only to be crushed by grim reality.” ~from Anne’s diary
A WORLD OF CHANGE…
The world is so different from the days of Anne Frank that her story, to younger generations, may feel made up. In a solemn effort to reaffirm our connection, the exhibit includes written experiences from six 21st-century teens whose lives reflect a bittersweet similarity to Anne’s. The teens depicted in the exhibit come from various backgrounds with diverse identities and disabilities. “Aren’t we all born equal?” they ask.
Their stories of intolerance, discrimination, and racism are important to read, and demonstrate the idea that discrimination is still a daily occurrence all over the world.
Lenora is very pleased with the library’s collaboration. “We need exhibits like this more than ever with the rise of anti-Semitism, discrimination, the bullying. What is wonderful about this exhibit is how it brings the lessons of the past into the present with the stories of six contemporary teenagers who have experiences such exclusion and how they have dealt with it. We are so fortunate in Georgetown to have a library committed to community outreach and Holocaust education.”
VISIT THE LIBRARY
Volunteer docents from Congregation Havurah Shalom will lead groups of students, youth groups, and other groups through the exhibit. The docents will be trained by a professional from the Anne Frank Center. Lenora adds, “This exhibit provides an excellent resource for schools and charter networks to comply with a new state law, signed by Governor Abbot in the previous legislative session, to teach students about tolerance, genocide, and the Holocaust.” The exhibit is appropriate for middle and high school students and recommends teachers allow two hours to view the complete exhibit and ask questions.
Docent-led tours can be scheduled on the website, AnneFrankExhibitGeorgetown.com. Public walk-in tours will also be available on Saturdays and Sundays at 11am and 1:30pm. The exhibit is free and open to the public during regular library hours.
- Mon-Thurs: 9am-8pm
- Friday: 9am-6pm
- Saturday: 9am-5pm
- Sunday: Noon-5pm