The National Holocaust Centre and Museum has lauded the impact of its new music video to tackle hate crime featuring a rapper and 86-year old Holocaust survivor.
The six-minute video it commissioned, called ‘Edek,’ is described as “a history lesson for the YouTube age” and features Janine Webber, born in the west Ukrainian city of Lviv, who was seven when war broke out.
In the video, her words comprise the lyrics, as she recalls how she hid in a hole under the wardrobe, how a local man risked his life to hide her and other Jews from the Nazis for over a year, and how her father and grandmother were shot.
The music video also features young American hip-hop artist Kaboo, who worked with Webber to “link the past and present” and deliver a message for today’s younger generation.
Those behind the video – which can be found at www.edek.film – said it “reminds us of the bravery and humanity required in standing up to intolerance and hatred” one week after new government figures showed a 40 percent rise in religious hate crime.
“Sadly, we’re not surprised by the recent shocking statistics,” said the centre’s chief executive Phil Lyons. “We’ve seen a stark increase in enquiries from schools and police forces trying to stamp out ideological and religious hate crimes.”
Film-maker Malcolm Green said: “The shape of the film took on a life of its own, evolving, mutating, generating its own beat and pulse and storyline, always told from the truth of Janine’s words.”
The video is being showcased at festivals around the world and has been nominated for several awards, but Holocaust education chiefs said the main benefit was to have the message relayed in medium that would interest the next generation.
“We believe creativity and innovation are vital tools to inspire young people to apply the Holocaust to their own lives,” said Lyons. “Otherwise, passivity can kill. We want to encourage active resistance to the rising tide of hatred out there today.”