Exhibit explores Anne Frank’s life
Sanelisiwe A. Mabaso
To honour the 90th anniversary of Anne Frank’s birth, the Durban Holocaust and Genocide Centre (DHGC) recently organised an exhibition that celebrated the short life of the Holocaust victim.
The Centre’s Project Manager, Maureen Caminsky, explained that the purpose of the exhibition was to celebrate the life of Anne Frank and to educate people, especially students, on the horrors of the holocaust.
“Anne was 15 years old when she passed away. The main reason we that we chose to celebrate her life and educate students about her is because we want them to know about the atrocities of Nazi Germany. We try and teach them to learn from the Holocaust, to be up standers and not bystanders, to examine their own consciousness when making decisions,” Caminksy said.
Anne Frank wrote a diary that documented her life in hiding from 1942 to 1944, during the German occupation of the Netherlands in World War II. Frank was born in 1929 and died in 1945 in a Nazi concentration camp after she and her family were arrested for being Jewish.
Visitors, guests and students from various high schools were addressed on the roots of anti-Semitism, instutionalised racism by the Nazi’s and the importance of appreciating and respecting diversity.
One of the students, Zama Mbatha, said that she was deeply saddened to learn about what the victims of the holocaust experienced and hopes that South Africans can learn a few important lessons from the atrocities of the Germans.
“What saddens me when I learn about all of this is that this kind of thing continues to happen in some parts of the world and it scares one because it just seems like people never learn from the past. I really think that every South African should come to visit this place and see what terrible effect racism can have on everybody life,” she said.
The exhibit features an exact replica of Franks bedroom, intimate photographs of the family and multimedia interactive videos of other Holocaust victims.
The Anne Frank Exhibition at the Durban Holocaust and Genocide Centre will continue throughout July. Entry to the Centre is free.