Yesterday and Today
Print version ISSN 2223-0386
BIKWANA, Nokuzola. History as evidential study in teaching of the Holocaust. Yesterday today [online]. 2011, n.6, pp. 63-77. ISSN 2223-0386.
This paper will discuss how various programmes support the teaching of the Holocaust through evidence. The Holocaust also provides an ideal backdrop for a study of racism, victimisation and persecution. Mindful of the difficulty of comparing historical events, we nonetheless maintain that of a study of the Holocaust can show the learner evidence of the negative impact of racism, oppression, persecution, prejudice, stereotyping and victimisation in any society. We argue that the study of the Holocaust can encourage the learner to resist racism, discrimination and xenophobia, and develop empathy with the victims of prejudice. In so doing, learners can come to an understanding of their role as active members of the society, and those of others as bystanders or collaborators. We maintain that this aim is defeated when the educator or facilitator fails to provide enough evidence that will elicit empathy, understanding and develop this sense of agency among the learners. History is explored as an evidential study using various sources ranging from primary ones like photographs, artifacts, documents as well as secondary sources. To this end this complex study is brought to life through the use of evidence provided, and the learners learn valuable skills.
Keywords : Prejudice; Racism; Evidence; Stereotyping; Sources; Holocaust; Empathy.