The Study Group on Intergenerational Consequences of the Holocaust brings together children and children’s children of those who were persecuted by the Nazis, of Holocaust survivors, but also descendants of Nazi perpetrators and bystanders. By confronting our personal histories together and by raising public awareness, we seek to counteract individual and collective tendencies towards forgetting the persecution that prevailed under National Socialism. In work circles, we promote exchange among the descendants of survivors and perpetrators/bystanders – and we extend these efforts to include public events and dialogue in a broader societal context.
Acknowledging and relating one’s own family history is an essential means of addressing traumatic and guilt-ridden experiences associated with war and the Holocaust, even in the second and later generations. We offer our members a protected space in which they can (re-)discover a personal way to express their experience and gain better access to their individual and collective history.
To realize these aims, we take recourse to psychological-psychoanalytic approaches as well as the insights/methods of scholars and political scientists. In reviewing things past, our particular interest is directed towards coping better with the present and shaping models for the future. We are committed to taking a stand against violence, xenophobia, racism and antisemitism, and to promoting democracy and humanitarianism.
These six work circles meet regularly:
- dialogue group
- literary circle
- intervision group for psychotherapists
- our workshop (research/theory)
- film group
- storytelling lab
In addition, several times a year we arrange a “Saturday Talk” for our members with the speakers from our public events, and we also hold an annual event “About Us” as a platform for exchange among our members.