Holocaust Memory Re framed – Jennifer

pg 65 – The significance of Yad Vashem in Israeli culture extends far beyond its function as an institution of memory. As previously discussed, Charles S. Liebman and Eliezer Don-Yehiya describe Yad Vashem as playing a critical role in the Israeli civil religion. Defining civil religion as that which is “most holy and sacred in the political cultre,” the authors argue that civil religion provides a sacred legitimation of the social order and society in which it functions. Similarly, Omer Bartov has argues that in reference to the Holocaust the State of Israel acts as “both the consequence and the panacea”: the Holocaust wouldn’t have occurred if A Jewish state has already existed, and since the Holocaust did occur, a Jewish state becomes a necessity.

pg 66 -The new Holocaust History museum demonstrates the power of evocative architecture as it creates in its visitors and empathetic, visceral identification with the victims of the Holocaust and inspires a redemptive reading of its narrative. A variety of techniques serve these ends, including a carefully choreographed use of shapes, material, color, and the play between shadow and light.

pg 69 – From the outside the cut across the hilltop appears to slit open the ground, leaving an “archaelogical scar” that is “symbolically healed by the landscape itself”. [see ockman, place in the world]

pg 74 – At the end of the ritualized journey within Yad Vashem, visitors ascend the gradullay slanting floor and extis ” gloom of the subterranean passage way” onto a balcony framced by cantilevered wings. This balocny offers an expansive view, overlooking the Jerusalem hills, forests, and villages. This is an affirmative journye, redemptive in the end with the visitors reintegration into present-day Jerusalem – the spatial center of the realized Zionist dream. This “carhartic opening” has been described as a biblical tabernacle, a pair of wings, and the “exultant blast of a horn or trumpet”.


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