Living History of the Testimonies All-Ukrainian Field Summer School on Holocaust Studies took place in the Crimea

The participants of the all-Ukrainian Field Summer School “The Holocaust through the Eyes of the non-Jewish Population (Russians, Ukrainians, Crimean Tatars) on the Example of the Crimean Peninsula” attempted at recreation of the tragic pictures of the WWII in the Crimea basing on the witness’ statements. Field research by the associates of the Crimean Ethnographic Museum, university students, and senior high school students was done at August 4-12th, 2006 in Krasnogvardeyskiy region (former Kurman-Kemeltchinskiy) and Razdolnoye village (former Ak-Sheikh), where before the War lived a large Jewish population and existed Jewish national kolkhozes.
The Summer school was organised by Ukrainian Centre for Holocaust Studies (director Anatoly Podolsky). The author and manager of the project is Tatyana Velichko, postgraduate student of the Institute for Arts, Folklore, and Ethnology of NAS of Ukraine. “Unfortunately, there are few protagonists of Oral history method in Ukraine, that is why our Summer school became an important stage in qualifying specialists for the future work in the field. Usual history methods only when combined with oral history can give the general picture. – notes Tatyana Velichko. – because Jewish kolkhozes and neigbouring areas had polyethnic surrounding: Russians, Ukrainians, Crimean Tatars, Germans etc. – we were especially interested in their perception of the Holocaust and inter-ethnic relations of the pre-war period”.
Stories of the local dwellers-witnesses to those events made it possible to find one more place of execution of Jews in times of WWII in Bashennya str in Razdolnoye village. The place is now occupied by water tower. Besides the statements about the tragedy of Jews, participants gathered information about another great tragedy – deportation of the Crimean Tatars in May 1944; and even some information about deportation of Crimean Germans.
Publication of the collection of the gathered data is planned.

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