Exhibition - The Rescuers: Picturing Moral Courage

Arts and Entertainment

March 27, 2014

From: Holocaust Museum Houston

Since its opening in 1996, Holocaust Museum Houston has asked visitors to consider the roles taken by people during the Holocaust and other genocides with the goal of eliminating apathy as a response to hatred and prejudice. The Museum's newest exhibition will explore these important choices when "The Rescuers: Picturing Moral Courage," opens March 28, 2014. In this exhibition, viewers will encounter images and stories of people who engaged in rescue activities during the Holocaust and genocides in Cambodia, Bosnia and Rwanda. The Rescuers

"The Rescuers: Picturing Moral Courage" is based on the work of Leora Kahn, who researched and interviewed rescuers from the Holocaust and other genocides. Each person's image and testimony that visitors encounter in this exceptional photographic exhibition reflect "ordinary" citizens, who, by choosing to rescue the "other," became heroes in a time when their country was committing acts of genocide. They came from different countries and different times, and for many, this is the first time they have told their stories - some risking their lives again in the telling. More than 30 images, accompanied by text from interviews, will tell the stories of farmers, taxi drivers, nuns, mothers and fathers who risked everything to save neighbors, friends and strangers.

Malka Drucker writes in the introduction to "Rescuers:  Portraits of Moral Courage" that "Unlike the bystanders who chose to accept life's unfairness, the rescuers adopted an activist, aggressive stance when confronted by Nazi oppression of Jews.  Whether his or her opposition stemmed from religious belief, a political ideology, a family tradition of social activism, or personal experience, almost every rescuer was unusually intolerant of human injustice." When asked why she saved a person, Mina Jahi, who engaged in rescue during the genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina, replied: "I knew that the same fate could happen to my children, to my sons, and it was totally normal to help a man in trouble. I didn't separate him from my own children." Enoch Rwanburindi of Rwanda said of his choice to rescue, "... I considered all human beings as God's creation and loved them the same way."

The exhibit is designed to raise awareness for the need to stand up to the injustices that are still happening in the world around us, and to contribute to the understanding of peace. Holocaust historian Dr. Debórah Dwork, Rose Professor of Holocaust History and director of the Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Clark University notes, "With the example of the rescuers, we are now a little better prepared to give aid to those in danger, wherever and whenever that might be." It is hoped that after viewing the photographs and learning from the accompanying thought-provoking stories, visitors will think about the choices that can be made in their lives every day and choose to join the Museum's efforts to Stop Hate.

March 28, 2014 through August 31, 2014

Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday, Noon to 5 p.m.

Holocaust Museum Houston
Morgan Family Center,
Mincberg Gallery,
5401 Caroline St.
Houston, TX 77004-6804.