Some thoughts about Holocaust Memorial and Museum
I especially want to write about this since I feel I learn the most there.
We arrived at the Holocaust Memorial in a foggy and rainy morning. There was a huge square with many concrete cuboids standing in rows. As I walked toward the center of the square, the ground started to become steep and cuboids were getting taller. It was so dark. I turned around and couldn’t see anyone since I was surrounded by the cuboids. I feel this memorial fits perfectly to the atmosphere of the museum because I felt overwhelmed and desperate by the enormous concrete cuboids.
Then we went into the museum. There were a lot of readings and images to explain what happened. One thing that surprised me was the museum focused a lot on individuals even though there were six million people died. There were phones I could pick up to hear survivors tell stories themselves. The first story impressed me the most. The mother was sent to Auschwitz with grandmother and two sons; one was six and the other was ten. They were being separated into two lines. The mother could clearly tell one line was for labor since they were all young and strong people, but she didn’t know what the other line was about. The German selector ordered her to the labor line and her younger son to the other line. Then the selector wanted to order his older son to the labor line since he was big for his age. She didn’t want her older son to work, so she asked the selector if the older son and grandmother could go to the other line. The selector agreed. In fact, the other line was to the gas chamber. The mother became the only survivor of her family but suffered the pain for the rest of her life. The way the museum focused so much on individuals just brought the holocaust more vivid. This was only one story but the pain was already so overwhelmed. Thinking about similar story was repeated six million times, the emotion was so strong that I couldn’t even express my feelings.