Yom Hashoah: How to Teach the Holocaust?
Last night and today was Yom Hashoah, a day when Jewish and non-Jewish communities remember the victims of the Holocaust. Allowing to observe the progression of anti-Semitism, this day allows to recall the facts and to continue the education about this genocide, which killed six million Jews during the Second World War.
The national director of the organization B’nai brith, Marvin Rotrand, precisely asked at the beginning of the month that the Ministry of Education (MEQ) make compulsory the teaching of the history of the Holocaust, as is currently being prepared by the’ Ontario.
Several Canadian and American studies have shown that teaching about the Holocaust and the conditions that led to it make people exposed to these teachings much more open-minded and tolerant, reports the president of the museum. of the Montreal Holocaust, Jacques Saada.
However, “you have to be very careful” with this issue, he insists. Because although the teaching of the Holocaust is important, if it is badly done “it can create backlashes and have the opposite effect of what we wanted”.
He gives the example of France, where the teaching of the Shoah is found in the curriculum on several occasions. He describes the result as “absolutely dismal”. An Iflop survey carried out in 2020 among French students showed that certain aspects of the genocide were questioned (mentioned by 21% of the students surveyed) and a refusal of this teaching on the part of 13% of the students surveyed.
The Shoah is also “too much discussed” in the school curriculum according to 34% of young French people. In the same survey, 18% of respondents questioned elements of this genocide, such as the existence of the gas chambers.
Aujourd'hui, pour Yom HaShoah, nous nous souvenons des 6 millions de vies juives perdues pendant l'Holocauste. N'oublions jamais les horreurs du passé et travaillons ensemble pour un avenir de paix et de tolérance.#polmtl pic.twitter.com/wJAQoKmC3t
— Valérie Plante (@Val_Plante) April 17, 2023
Marvin Rotrand explains that it’s tradition to name the names of people who were victims of the genocide, that the ceremonies are “very emotional”. Today, a ceremony also took place at the Town Hall. Mr. Saada was present, in addition to members of the opposition and other guests.