The Forgotten Holocaust: The Life, Death, and Rebirth of the Jews of Wolyn, 1900-2000

Douglas Greenberg

“Memories of the Forgotten Holocaust: The Jews of Wolyn, 1900-2000” aims to encounter two problems simultaneously.  One is to reconstruct the experience of survivors of the Holocaust in a place that was in six different countries in the twentieth century: the region of Wolyn, which is now in Ukraine.  Relying upon about 500 video interviews in the Shoah Foundation Archive, the project aims to uncover both the narrative of the Shoah in a place where 250,000 Jews were murdered before Auschwitz opened and also the unusual paths to survival followed by those few Volhynian Jews who escaped the bullets of the Einsatzgruppen and their Ukrainian henchmen.   The second aim of the project is to explore the memory of the Shoah in Wolyn as expressed by survivors who are only too aware that the prevailing images of the Holocaust do not comprehend the murder of their families and friends.  Their knowledge that the story of the Holocaust in Wolyn has been largely forgotten in public memory influences how they recall and retell the story in their Shoah Foundation interviews.