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YU News

"Names, Not Numbers" is Off and Running

by Avi Weschler ('14)

As a new year has begun, so too has MTA's amazing "Names, Not Numbers" oral history project. Led by Mrs. Tova Fish-Rosenberg and Dr. Geoffrey Cahn, some thirty students from this year's senior class will have the opportunity to be a part of history.

Our first class began with a moving introduction by Rabbi Taubes about the Torah's mandate to ask things of those who are older than we and about our unique responsibility given that we are the last generation to have the honor to learn about the Holocaust directly from the very people who witnessed its horrors. We were then shown a clip of '"One Survivor Remembers", a 1995 documentary short film by Kary Antholis. In the film, Holocaust survivor Gerda Weissmann Klein recounts her six-year ordeal as a victim of Nazi cruelty.

After the clip concluded, the silence in the room was deafening, as the weight of the project we had just undertaken became clear. We were about to begin a yearlong commitment to record the sorrows of a generation of heroes. With the guidance of Mrs. Rosenberg and Dr. Cahn, we are certain to be successful and give due honor to a generation lost.