A Trajectory of Memory

At this place there are many components that go into crafting a rich experience for all visitors, be they local students, or international pilgrims. The variety of natnal museum exhibitions in the blocks testify to that. In select blocks at Auschwitz 1, visitors can learn the specific story of a particular nation’s plight at the hands of the Nazi Germans. Each one is it’s own museum within a museum, and they were all designed by different museum teams from across Europe in cooperation with the museum. Originally set up by former prisoners, the first one was established in 1960, and the decades since then have seen many modifications, closings, and openings.

Some seem to have been arranged to shape an emotional experience in the visitor, while others are more information-oriented, offering a more educational program. It’s a situation not unlike our own museums in Orchard Lake; each one arranged by a different military or fraternal organization. Here at Auschwitz, it’s possible to discover the great value in this for museum education. By seeing older national exhibitions alongside avant-grade new additions, such as the Russian one, visitors can experience a trajectory of education that wouldn’t be present had there not been such variety. Put differently, it invites visitors to observe subtle differences and likenesses in how people communicate Auschwitz education For us in Orchard Lake, the museum rooms offer the same trajectory, as each of them were established by veterans or community leaders many years ago, and have undergone several modifications through their history.

Tonight, I’ll be riding the rails to Warsaw again to the Museum of Polish History on Senatorska St. At 10:00 am tomorrow, I’ll meet with Director Robert Kostro. I’d better pack– my bus leaves in 15 minutes! Thank goodness I travel light…;-)

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