Date of Thesis

2015

Thesis Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Type

Bachelor of Music

First Advisor

Kim Councill

Keywords

Holocaust, Holocaust education, Music education, Holocaust curriculum, Music and memory, Holocaust commemoration music, Genocide, Holocaust awareness, Different trains, Survivor from Warsaw, Brundibar, Annelies

Abstract

On June 26, 2014, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett signed a law requiring mandatory Holocaust and Genocide education in all Pennsylvania schools. This legislation, the result of efforts made by Holocaust author and advocated Rhonda Fink-Whitman, made Pennsylvania the sixth state to require Holocaust and Genocide education. However, the law does not state how to teach about this rather difficult topic. According to anthropologist and ethnomusicologist Alan Merriam, one of the functions of music in any society is "emotional expression." Because music gives us the ability to convey emotions in a way that speech perhaps cannot, it is a beneficial tool to use when teaching about the unspeakable horrors of the Holocaust. I propose that music is an effective method to teach about the Holocaust. The ultimate purpose of this best-practice and historical research project is to create lesson plans for music educators to utilize in order to effectively and appropriately teach about the Holocaust based on the relationship of music and memory, the role of music in concentration camps, and Holocaust commemoration music.

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