Kelly J. Zúñiga, Ed.D., Executive Director of Holocaust Museum Houston
Sujiro Seam, Consul Général of France in Houston
Jacques Fredj, Executive Director of Mémorial de la Shoah
Michael Marrus, Professor Emeritus of Holocaust Studies, University of Toronto
Reception and visit of the exhibition in the Central Gallery
Introductory speeches followed by a lecture by special guest Dr. Michael Marrus in the Albert and Ethel Herzstein Theater
This exhibition is based on the journal written by Hélène Berr, a young Jewish French woman, whose promising future was brutally cut short by Vichy Government’s laws and the extermination plan imagined by the Nazis. Studying English Literature at Sorbonne University, Helene Berr was 21 years old when she began her journal. We follow her steps through Paris under the German Occupation, perceiving the daily experience of the unbearable, oscillating between hope and despair, until her arrest and deportation to Auschwitz in 1944.
While revealing a true premonition of the inescapable, this subtle testimony is exceptionally poetic, has rare literary qualities, and carries a universal dimension that regards and questions every human being with sincerity. The exhibition however goes beyond the framework of Helene Berr’s journal and personality, as it broadens the context of the Occupation and addresses largely the persecution of the Jews in France. With the support of photographs, archives, films, interactive animations and maps, this exhibition shows how the daily lives of Jews had been impacted by these terrible acts of violence.
This exhibition was designed, created, and distributed by the Mémorial de la Shoah in Paris, France (curators Karen Taieb and Sophie Nagiscarde), with the guidance of Mariette Job (niece of Hélène Berr), and made possible through the generous support of SNCF.
This presentation was made possible through the support of the Consulate General of France in Houston, the Embassy of France in the United States, KPRC, United Airlines, and SNCF.
Holocaust Museum Houston
Morgan Family Center
5401 Caroline Street Houston