As the philosopher and poet George Santayana said, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Unfortunately, as World War II recedes further and further into history, we seem to be moving closer and closer to seeing the past repeat itself, as evidenced by the increasing number of Holocaust deniers and rising fascist movements around the world.
In this year’s Victor Baxt Lecture, “The Holocaust: How Could it Happen,” Holocaust educator and survivor Carl Feldman will discuss how Germany fell into ruin – and took the rest of the continent with it.
At the dawn of the 20th century, Europe looked forward to the future. Germany was imperialistic, successful and in control; everything seemed possible. But by the middle of the century, the continent was decimated, 1,000 years of culture was destroyed, the map was totally remade and violence was pervasive. What happened in such a short time? We must learn and remember, so history does not repeat itself.
The Victor Baxt Lecture Series is funded by an endowment from the late Victor Baxt, with additions to the endowment by the late Gussie Baxt. The purpose of the series is to bring Holocaust education to the greater Rhode Island community.
LEV POPLOW is a communications and development consultant who writes for the Sandra Bornstein Holocaust Education Center, in Providence. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.