Holocaust Memory in the Digital Age
Survivors’ Stories and New Media Practices
Jeffrey Shandler

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An Archive in Contexts



The Visual History Archive: An Overview

The USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive—the largest and most widely available collection of videotaped interviews with survivors and other witnesses of the Holocaust—began, we are told, serendipitously, in the wake of creating another work of Holocaust media. While making the 1993 feature film Schindler’s List, director Steven Spielberg talked with a number of Jewish Holocaust survivors who are referred to in German as Schindlerjuden (Schindler Jews). During World War II they had been imprisoned in the Cracow ghetto and the Płaszów concentration camp when they were conscripted by the film’s protagonist, Oskar Schindler, an ethnic German businessman and Nazi Party member, to work in his factories in Cracow and, later, Brünnlitz. Schindler’s efforts saved these Jews from harsher treatment—and the possibility of death—during the war. In addition to some of the Schindlerjuden whose stories figure in the book by Thomas Keneally on which Schindler’s List is based, Spielberg met other survivors who sought him out at their own initiative in Poland, where most of the film was shot.1 Unlike most people who might show up uninvited at the set of a Hollywood feature, these men and women were not turned away. Rather, the makers of Schindler’s List reported that speaking with survivors helped the film’s storytelling to “be more authentic.” Over a hundred Schindlerjuden also appeared in the film’s epilogue, a tribute to Schindler filmed at his gravesite in Jerusalem.

Spielberg’s encounters with survivors while directing Schindler’s List prompted him to envision a follow-up project to the film. After considering the possibility of a documentary on the Schindlerjuden he had met, Spielberg eventually proposed interviewing “as many Holocaust survivors as possible.”2 By April 1994, a plan to establish what was first known as the Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation (referred to hereafter as the Shoah Foundation) was under way, with the initial goal of interviewing fifty thousand survivors within three years. Eventually, the Foundation recorded over fifty-one thousand interviews with survivors and other eyewitnesses to the Holocaust, conducted in fifty-six countries and in thirty-two languages, between 1994 and 2000.3 Profits from Schindler’s List—unanticipated by either the director or the film’s producers, who did not expect it to be a commercial success—provided initial financial support for creating what is now known as the Visual History Archive (VHA).

The VHA is far from the first effort to record and collect videos of Holocaust survivors’ personal narratives. Yet from the start, the Archive was conceived on a grander scale than all previous projects, most of which had been undertaken by preexisting institutions dedicated either to research on the Holocaust or to some related topic, such as local Jewish history or World War II remembrance. By contrast, the Shoah Foundation was established for the specific purpose of creating the VHA. The Archive was envisioned as a stand-alone resource, international in its reach, surpassing other similar projects in range, quantity, and prominence. Inaugurated in the mid-1990s, when most Holocaust survivors were senior citizens, the VHA was also driven by a sense of urgency, “a race against the clock” of an aging cohort of interviewees.4 In contrast to other oral history collections, assembled for research purposes with more constrained and selective inventories of interviews, the VHA’s scope is manifestly monumental, similar to other memorial impulses that strive to demonstrate the Holocaust’s enormity and to recall as many names of the genocide’s victims as possible.

Despite the project’s envisioned vast scale, and energized by the acute time pressure, the VHA came together swiftly, involving many hundreds of people as coordinators, advisers, videographers, interviewers, technicians, indexers, and educators. To recruit interviewees, the Shoah Foundation publicized its mission in mainstream media as well as through survivor communities’ social networks. Seeking a diversity of interviewees, the Foundation made special efforts to include Jewish survivors living in eastern Europe and those who are haredim (Hebrew: “God-fearing,” referring to those Jews who are most stringently observant of traditional religious practices and, at the same time, most resistant to integration into a cultural mainstream), populations largely absent from older videotaping collections.5 Though the project centered on Jewish survivors, members of other groups persecuted by the Nazis—Sinti and Roma, political prisoners, Jehovah’s Witnesses, homosexuals, survivors of eugenics policies and of forced labor—were also interviewed, as were various eyewitnesses to the Holocaust: rescuers, aid providers, liberators, and participants in war crimes trials.6 The Shoah Foundation recruited a wide variety of people to conduct the interviews.7 Rather than employing only scholars of the Holocaust, psychotherapists, or experts in documenting oral histories, as some other videotaping projects have done, the Archive’s creators have argued that the interviewers’ “diversity of backgrounds and experience . . . made the archive richer.” At the same time, the Foundation ran training programs for its interviewers in order to establish a “consistent methodology” for their work by providing background information on Holocaust history and guidance on interviewing practices.8 Even though interviewers sought to conform to the Foundation’s standards, the interviews vary considerably in approach, reflecting the diversity of both interviewers and interviewees.

The Shoah Foundation also established protocols to standardize the project’s recruiting, record keeping, videotaping, and inventorying. After contacting the Foundation and providing basic information about his or her wartime experience, each survivor was assigned to an interviewer. Several days before the taping session, the interviewer spoke with the survivor to collect answers to an extensive preinterview questionnaire, which asked for detailed information about the survivor’s family background and wartime experiences, as well as the particulars of prewar and postwar life. Gathering this information was primarily intended “to serve as a guide for the interviewer.” In addition, this task provided the survivor and interviewer with an opportunity to establish a rapport with each other, and, perhaps most importantly, it enabled survivors to reflect on the impending task of relating their life histories.9

Both interviewers and videographers were given detailed guidelines regarding the form of the interview and its documentation.10 Interviewers were instructed to begin and end with specified questions and to progress chronologically though the survivor’s life story, devoting proportionally more attention to the Holocaust period than to the prewar or postwar era. While advising interviewers that “preparation and research are vital” to the task, the Foundation also instructed them to avoid turning the interview into “a ‘question and answer’ session” and counseled that an “ideal interview consists of open-ended questions that allow the interviewee’s testimony to flow.”11 The tension between these divergent goals is resolved differently in each recording, reflecting how each interviewer and survivor approached the task at hand as well as the nature of their relationship with each other. Following the interview proper, videographers were to film a separate sequence documenting the survivor’s photographs and other memorabilia and to record a group interview with members of the survivor’s family. For each of these sequences the Shoah Foundation’s guidelines specify the composition of shots, lighting, and camera movement.

Standardization of the VHA is perhaps most readily evident—and most consequential—not in the interviews themselves but in their inventorying and indexing, as these are the rubrics through which users access the Archive’s holdings. The act of searching the Archive’s online databases precedes the users’ screening of survivor interview videos, becoming not merely the instrument of access but the primary activity for engaging this repository of memory. While the videotaping of interviews was under way, the Shoah Foundation began the task of developing a computerized system for searching and accessing interviews, creating a customized matrix of search terms specific to the Archive. The decision had been made to index the videos, rather than transcribe them, as both a more expedient undertaking and a more useful aid to researchers.12 The VHA’s vast size can make the prospect of searching among its many thousands of hours of video seem daunting. The Archive’s creators realized that addressing this challenge was essential to its use, even if doing so would complicate the integrity of individual recordings as discrete narratives. “Each of the nearly 52,000 testimonies of survivors and other witnesses of the Holocaust, preserved for all time, is invaluable,” the Shoah Foundation explained on its website in 2007. “However, the full social and educational potential of the Foundation’s archive cannot be realized without creating an effective means for future viewers to search through the tens of thousands of hours of testimony.”13

Like the VHA itself, the index is vast, consisting of over fifty thousand “experiential” and “geographic” search terms. It is structured as a taxonomy, with search terms nested within a graduated series of broader topics. For example, one of the index’s twenty-two main headings is “daily life,” within which are seven subheadings, including “family life.” This term is divided into more than a dozen categories, among them “childbearing,” which is, in turn, subdivided into “camp childbearing,” “forced march childbearing,” “ghetto childbearing,” and five other search terms. Search terms are keyed to particular interview segments during which interviewees discuss these topics.14 The experiential search terms are generalized, enabling users to cross-reference interviews tagged with the same term, including interviews in various locations and languages.

In addition, each search of the VHA using an index term can be “filtered”—that is, the list of interviews tagged with a given term can be narrowed by the criteria of interview language, gender of interviewee, and “experience group” (e.g., Jewish survivor or liberator). Searches can also be conducted for the names of particular people, places, events, or institutions. Searching multiple terms (e.g., finding interviews in which both “early personal aspirations” and “school antisemitism” are discussed) can further winnow interview selections.15 Even when one narrows the scope of interviews by a particular search term, language, location, and type of interviewee, the search can yield dozens, even hundreds, of segments.

As is true of archives generally, access to the VHA is not simply facilitated but structured by its index and search functions. As philosopher Jacques Derrida observes, an archive’s “technical structure . . . determines the archivable content . . . and its relationship to the future. The archivization produces as much as it records.”16 As with other large-scale indexed works, much of what one might find in the VHA, except by chance, is determined by what is itemized in the index. Its terms and structure reflect core goals of the Shoah Foundation for the Archive’s use: As a memorial project, it endeavors to list the name of every person mentioned during the interviews, including survivors’ family members and other acquaintances, many of whom died during the war. As a documentation of Holocaust history, the VHA’s index references locations, events, and core experiences of the genocide; the indexing of interviewees’ prewar and postwar experiences is both less extensive and less specific than the wartime portions of their narratives. As an instrument of moral edification, the Archive indexes terms that tag interview segments in which survivors reflect on ethical issues or on lessons of the Holocaust (e.g., “future message,” “Holocaust education,” “Holocaust testimony sharing willingness”).

Implementation of the index relies on the properties of video and digital technologies. Video both enables continuous recording for an extended period of time (tapes used for VHA interviews run thirty minutes each) and facilitates the articulation of the interview into discrete segments, measured by the recording’s time code, to which index terms can be tagged. The Archive atomizes and reconfigures the running flow of video through its digitization: first, by means of the VHA’s index, which isolates segments of interviews according to its taxonomy; second, through the VHA’s search function, which culls segments from multiple interviews, according to a user’s choice of criteria, and aggregates these segments into pools of information. This property of the VHA, in effect, enables survivor interviews to tell different stories, which are engendered neither by the interviewees nor by the Shoah Foundation, but by users of its Archive.

The Foundation’s protocols, the videotaped interviews created according to these guidelines, and the archival structure that inventories and indexes these recordings to facilitate their access are more closely interrelated than is generally the case in archives, including digital collections. The VHA’s holdings were recorded expressly for this collection, which distinguishes them from many, if not most, documents in paper archives as well as media archives, whose holdings were originally created for other purposes and users. Moreover, the VHA’s digitized interviews are connected online with their cataloging and indexing as part of an integrated database and retrieval system. When summoned through the Archive’s search mechanisms, videos appear on computer screens alongside the display of information that inventories the recordings and identifies particular segments. For users, the videos do not exist as works independent of the Archive’s digital framework.

Even as digitization transforms how these recordings are stored and searched, the original thirty-minute videotapes on which the interviews were recorded remain a vestigial presence and structure the interviews’ flow. Interviewers can be heard informing interviewees that they are near the end of a tape, and subsequent tapes typically begin with the interviewer iterating the identifying information stated at the beginning of the first tape or providing some narrative transition from the previous tape. Thus the constitution of the VHA is manifest not only in its index and databases but also in the individual video recordings within the Archive, each of which bears the imprint of the Shoah Foundation’s protocols and, in turn, exemplifies the VHA in miniature.

The VHA’s online viewing screen surrounds the video of the survivor interview (center) with links to metadata and indexing information (lower left), a scrolling display of indexing terms for the video segment as it plays (lower center), and a world map identifying locations mentioned in the interview (right). Provided by the USC Shoah Foundation.

The digitization of the Archive’s holdings poses distinct opportunities and challenges for their storage, dissemination, and preservation. On one hand, digital media are well suited to the duplication of information, enabling the production of a potentially infinite number of copies that replicate the original perfectly, and to its dissemination among multiple users in widely dispersed locations. The Shoah Foundation’s planners envisioned making its collection of videos available through an online data retrieval system early in the institution’s history, at a time when the Internet was just becoming widely used as a tool for sending and receiving text messages. As a result of its pioneering work on indexing and cataloging videos, as well as creating a digital platform for their viewing online, the Foundation holds patents on eleven technological innovations.17

On the other hand, digital video recordings are unstable—in some respects, more mutable than, say, celluloid films or paper transcripts. The binary code that is the foundation of all digital materials is stored on a substrate—whether a compact disc, a hard drive, or the remote server of a computer “cloud”—that can easily be corrupted. Preservation of the VHA’s holdings became “another race against time,” echoing the initial urgency with which these interviews had been recorded. Given that one of the VHA’s primary goals is sustaining Holocaust memories “in perpetuity,” the task of maintaining the Archive’s recordings is doubly onerous, as it ties the upholding of remembrance to the conserving of media.18

The VHA’s duplication of its interviews in different media and formats is central to the Archive’s preservation efforts and demonstrates the rapid changes in technologies that have taken place since its initiation. Videographers recorded the interviews on Betacam SP format videotapes, the broadcast industry standard in the mid-1990s. Once delivered to the Shoah Foundation, these analog tapes were duplicated and coded for entry into the Archive’s master database. One copy of the interview was digitized for storage in a 150-terabyte robotic retrieval system, which enables users to access and navigate the entire collection. In 2009, the Shoah Foundation began saving its original master tapes as Motion JPEG 2000 files, the format that “the Library of Congress has decided to use . . . to archive its video collections.” To do this, the Foundation “utilizes advanced dual robot technology to digitize, preserve, and access the testimony in the archive. One robot digitizes the Institute’s original testimonies into various file formats for preservation and access. Once digitized, the nearly 52,000 testimonies are transferred to a second robot, which serves as an online storage system for the Institute’s archive.”19

Disseminating the VHA’s holdings has followed a similar dynamic of shifting media and formats, reflecting technological developments as well as the Shoah Foundation’s evolving mission. The Foundation first presented excerpts of its interviews to the public in compilation documentaries, beginning with Survivors of the Holocaust (1996), and eventually produced eleven documentary films. In 1999 the Foundation issued Survivors: Testimonies of the Holocaust, the first of its educational CD-ROMs, which use the medium’s capacity to hyperlink materials in multiple formats (video, audio, still images, text) to enable users to explore connections between survivor interviews and a selection of supporting materials, such as time lines, archival photographs, maps, and reference materials.20 These CD-ROMs all pursue specific pedagogical goals that determine which interviews or parts of interviews are presented and how they should be studied.21

Concurrently, the Shoah Foundation explored the possibility of making its collection available online to researchers and teachers to enable them to undertake their own studies of the Archive’s holdings. Doing so entailed developing new technology as well as addressing concerns specific to the material at hand, especially fears among interviewees that “the detailed personal information they’d provided could find its way into the wrong hands,” including those of Holocaust deniers. Unlike the more restrictive policies of other collections of Holocaust survivor interviews, the VHA elected to pursue means to “provide the broadest possible access” to its holdings, while also caring for them “ethically and responsibly,” by taking what the Shoah Foundation characterizes as a “techno-optimist line that the information revolution was a good thing.”22

The Foundation initiated a series of projects that follow the rapid development of digital and online technologies to make its archival holdings available. Beginning in 1999, the Foundation established access to collections of VHA interviews at museums and research institutions, including the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, the Joods Historisch Museum in Amsterdam, and the Jüdisches Museum Berlin. In 2012, the VHA was installed in the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust in an exhibition called Tree of Testimony. “Part monument and part informational presentation,” the installation takes the form of “a 70-screen video sculpture displaying all of the [Shoah Foundation’s] nearly 51,000 video testimonies over the course of a single year.” Visitors can access the sound track of an individual interview, as it plays on one of the screens, using the museum’s audio guides.23 While the visual display is monumental in scope, the visitor’s audial encounter with the exhibition is more intimate. Each museumgoer listens on headphones to one selected interview at a time, while simultaneously seeing—but not hearing—dozens of other interviewees talking.

Following the advent of the computer networking consortium Internet2, the Shoah Foundation began to offer universities and research institutions an online subscription service to the full VHA in 2002. Online platforms that facilitate use of a more limited, but still sizable, collection of complete interviews followed.24 IWitness, a website launched in 2009, was designed primarily for use in American secondary schools. The site provides a “guided exploration” of over 1,500 VHA videos, which combines learning “first hand from survivors and witnesses of the Holocaust” with “participatory” use of the collection through a “built-in online video editor” that enables students to “build [their] own video projects.” IWitness explains to students that the site offers “the opportunity to enrich your understanding of how this historical event had an impact on individual lives” while learning “important digital media skills, including searching and ethical remixing, that will prepare you for becoming a digital citizen in the 21st century.”25 Through this site, the Foundation situates its videos as moral touchstones by virtue of both content and form, while inviting students to sample the VHA for cinematic narratives of the users’ creating. IWitness proffers the exercise of making one’s own compilation video as an opportunity for ethical instruction in its own right, extending the Foundation’s conviction that viewing the Archive’s interviews has a morally galvanizing power.

Tree of Testimony exhibition, designed by E. Randol Schoenberg and Hagy Belzberg, installed in 2012 at the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust. Courtesy of Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust.

The Shoah Foundation’s mission evolved considerably over the first two decades of its existence, expanding in several capacities. First, the Foundation broadened the scope of its collection by taking a wide-ranging approach to Holocaust remembrance, most recently extended to include interviews of Jews who lived in North Africa and the Middle East during World War II and who “witnessed the destruction created there by Nazi occupiers or governments that were Nazi sympathizers.”26 In recent years, the VHA has integrated into its holdings video interviews with Holocaust survivors conducted by other institutions.27 Moreover, the Foundation has undertaken the recording or preserving of audiovisual interviews with survivors of mass murders in Armenia, Guatemala, Nanjing, and Rwanda.28 Some of these interviews have also been integrated into the VHA and its index, enabling researchers to examine common topics among survivors of different atrocities. Second, the scope of the Shoah Foundation’s efforts to present its holdings to the public developed through a variety of media as well as through training programs, colloquia, and other events for teachers and researchers. In 2001, the Foundation redefined its mission, stressing a focus on educational use of the VHA “to overcome prejudice, intolerance, and bigotry—and the suffering they cause.”29 Besides creating pedagogical materials and hosting teachers’ workshops on its own, the Foundation has collaborated on Holocaust education with other organizations, including the Anti-Defamation League and Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial and research center.30

In 2006 the Shoah Foundation affiliated with the University of Southern California and is now known as the USC Shoah Foundation: The Institute for Visual History and Education. This relationship has enabled the Foundation to expand scholarly work on the Archive through teaching, research fellowships, and academic conferences. Its presence at USC also provides the Foundation with opportunities to explore new technologies for preserving and providing access to interviews with survivors of mass atrocities. Among these endeavors is New Dimensions in Testimony, developed in concert with the USC Institute for Creative Technologies, which will enable audiences “to interact personally with testimony through true holographic display” of a Holocaust survivor. Audience members’ questions, asked of an animate, three-dimensional image of the interviewee, will trigger apposite prerecorded responses, stored in a database, by means of a “technology called Natural Language Understanding.”31 While this project continues the Shoah Foundation’s mission to use state-of-the-art technology to record and disseminate survivors’ memories, the interactive holograph shifts the mode of engaging survivors’ memories from searching and utilizing the extensive amount of information to be found in the VHA to interacting with a simulation of a living survivor. At the same time, the Foundation continues to develop the VHA, initiating in 2016 a multiyear plan “to design and implement a new Visual History Archive platform and interface that will offer enhanced functionality and better search results, improve access by building new pathways across a variety of devices for audiences to view and utilize testimony, and develop multi-modal support resources.”32

The VHA is an exceptional resource: daunting in its scope, elaborate in its structure, dynamic in its sense of mission, vigorous in its engagement of the public. The Archive not only is widely used but also has been the subject of extensive attention, both positive and negative. Before we examine the VHA as a major artifact of Holocaust memory and a notable work of digital humanities by probing the Archive’s holdings, a manifold understanding of the project in context is called for. Given the complexity of the VHA, this entails examining its place within multiple frames of reference, defined by its subject, historical moment, and medium.

Notes

1. Thomas Keneally’s novel was originally published as Schindler’s Ark (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1982).

2. USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony: The Legacy of “Schindler’s List” and the USC Shoah Foundation (New York: Newmarket Press/HarperCollins, 2014), 128, 135.

3. Visual History Archive (hereafter VHA) Online, “About Us: The Archive,” http://vhaonline.usc.edu/about/archive.aspx (accessed August 1, 2016).

4. USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 151.

5. “The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, in partnership with the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies at Yale University, produced six interviews with Orthodox Jewish Holocaust survivors in 2011” and continues to record interviews with this population of survivors. US Holocaust Memorial Museum, “Oral History Interviews of the Orthodox Jewish Holocaust Survivors Collection,” http://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn44091 (accessed July 28, 2016).

6. The number of VHA interviews for these categories are as follows: Sinti and Roma (407), political prisoners (263), Jehovah’s Witnesses (83), homosexuals (6), survivors of eugenics policies (13), non-Jewish survivors of forced labor (11), rescuers and aid providers (1,147), liberators (384), and participants in war crimes trials (62). VHA Online, “Experience Groups Search,” http://vha.usc.edu/biosearch/bioSearch.aspx (accessed August 2, 2016).

7. For example, in contrast to the VHA’s practice, “many of the interviewers” for the Fortunoff Video Archive “were either analysts or those in training.” Leah Wolfson, “‘Is There Anything Else You Would Like to Add?’: Visual Testimony Encounters the Lyric Author(s),” South Atlantic Review 73, no. 3 (Summer 2008): 88.

8. USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 186, 190.

9. Shoah Foundation Institute, Interviewer Guidelines (Los Angeles: University of Southern California, 2007); both this and the VHA’s “Pre-interview Questionnaire” are available at USC Shoah Foundation, “Collecting Testimonies,” http://sfi.usc.edu/explore/collecting_testimonies (accessed September 17, 2015). See also USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 197.

10. Shoah Foundation Institute, Interviewer Guidelines; Shoah Foundation Institute, Videographer Guidelines (Los Angeles: University of Southern California, 2007), available at USC Shoah Foundation, “Collecting Testimonies,” http://sfi.usc.edu/explore/collecting_testimonies (accessed September 17, 2015).

11. Shoah Foundation Institute, Interviewer Guidelines, 7, 10.

12. See USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 221.

13. USC Shoah Foundation, 2007, “The Archive,” www.usc.edu/schools/college/vhi/vhf-new/1-TheArchive.htm [no longer accessible], quoted in Jeffrey Shandler, “Holocaust Survivors on Schindler’s List; or, Reading a Digital Archive against the Grain,” American Literature 85, no. 4 (2013): 5.

14. VHA interview segments were defined, at first, as narrative units of several minutes’ length each, and the duration of each unit was determined by the indexer. When this proved an inefficient method, the length of an indexing segment was set at one minute. In effect, this is a shift from indexing according to the equivalent of a chapter—its length variable and determined by narrative cohesiveness—to indexing according to the equivalent of a page, with a standard, if diegetically arbitrary, length.

15. VHA Online, “USC Shoah Foundation, Visual History Archive: Search,” http://vha.usc.edu/keywordsearch/keywordSearch.aspx (accessed September 17, 2015).

16. Jacques Derrida, Archive Fever: A Freudian Impression, trans. Eric Prenowitz (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996), 17.

17. USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 331.

18. Ibid., 280, 219.

19. USC Shoah Foundation, “Technical Aspects of the Project,” http://sfi.usc.edu/preservation/technical.php (accessed April 3, 2013). See also Hriday Balachandran, Sam Gustman, Christopher Ho, and Luke Sheppard, “Shoah Foundation Architecture,” Shoah Foundation Institute for Visual History and Education, University of Southern California, September 21, 2009, http://web.stanford.edu/group/dlss/pasig/PASIG_October2009/Day2/Shoah-Foundation-Architecture-final.pdf (accessed August 26, 2016).

20. See USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 250.

21. See, e.g., the discussion of the Shoah Foundation’s 2004 video Giving Voice: Today’s Kids Get Real about Bias, in Jeffrey Shandler, Jews, God, and Videotape: Religion and Media in America (New York: New York University Press, 2009), 116–18.

22. USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 237, 254, 237.

23. Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust, “Interactive Exhibits,” http://www.lamoth.org/visitor-information/guide-to-the-museum/interactive-technology-and-the/ (accessed January 11, 2015).

24. “VHA Online,” http://vhaonline.usc.edu (accessed September 24, 2015). This site, launched in 2012, enables public access to about 1,600 videos of interviews with Holocaust survivors and witnesses, along with the Archive’s search mechanism.

25. USC Shoah Foundation, “About/IWitness,” http://iwitness.usc.edu/SFI/About.aspx (accessed January 3, 2015).

26. USC Shoah Foundation, “Testimonies from North Africa and the Middle East,” http://sfi.usc.edu/collections/holocaust/name (accessed August 1, 2016).

27. These include 912 interviews conducted by Jewish Family and Children’s Services Holocaust Center, based in California, and 1,179 interviews from eight Canadian-based collections. VHA Online, “Search,” http://vhaonline.usc.edu/search (accessed August 29, 2016).

28. The VHA includes interviews with 269 survivors of the 1915–23 Armenian genocide, 10 interviews with survivors of the 1978–96 Guatemalan genocide, 30 interviews with survivors of the 1937 Nanjing massacre, and 66 survivors of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. VHA Online, “Experience Groups,” http://vhaonline.usc.edu/biosearch/bioSearch (accessed August 29, 2016).

29. USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 328.

30. See the website of the joint project Echoes and Reflections, which provides resources on Holocaust education to American teachers; http://echoesandreflections.org (accessed May 12, 2015).

31. USC Shoah Foundation, Testimony, 317.

32. USC Shoah Foundation, “External Advisory Committee Plans Next Phase of Visual History Archive Program,” July 22, 2016, https://sfi.usc.edu/news/2016/07/11854-external-advisory-committee-plans-next-phase-visual-history-archive-program (accessed August 9, 2016).