Romanian pupils took part in a workshop on totalitarianism and its discriminatory practices

On May 31, the first seminar from the series "The Totalitarian State and its Discriminatory Practices", which is part of the "House of Memory" project, took place in the premises of the Bucovina Museum in Suceava (Romania). The participants of the workshop were 25 students from the National College "Petru Rareș". The classes for them were conducted by the teacher of this college, Dr. Anca Mihaela Zaharia, and the employee of the museum, Dr. Stefan Dejan.

The workshop consisted of 4 modules, during which pupils had the opportunity to get to know and discuss the characteristic features and principles of the functioning of the totalitarian system, the problem of anti-Semitism in the USSR and Bukovina during the period when it became the part of the totalitarian (authoritarian) states, as well as the topic of the Holocaust, its causes and consequences. The dangers of any totalitarian system, as well as propaganda as a tool to influence citizens, were discussed during group exercises specially prepared for the participants of the project.

In the third module, pupils had the opportunity to learn more about the relevant part of the exposition of the historical museum. After lunch, there was an online session from Chernivtsi, during which Anna Yamchuk, an employee of the Museum of the History and Culture of Bukovinian Jews and the coordinator of educational activities of the project, told the audience about the so-called "the case of David Falik" (1926). It’s important because it actually vividly demonstrated the first symptoms of the "disease" of Romanian society at that time such as nationalism, chauvinism, and national hatred of Jews.

The topic of the workshop aroused great interest among pupils, as evidenced by their enthusiastic feedback at the end of a busy day.