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The Pogrom in Iași. The Memory of Places

„Only the forgotten, are truly dead…”

Forgetting is a natural process, a mechanism used by the human brain to protect from trauma. We forget so to protect ourselves from a painful past. But sometimes we forget because we cannot assume, we cannot accept, or out of ignorance. It`s just that running away from the past doesn`t help build a better future because this kind of forgetting condemns us to repeating past mistakes.

The melting days of June 1941, the fear floating in the air, the blood on the streets and in the Police Headquarters courtyard, the unbreathable air in the trains` wagons, and the pain of being separated from family and friends remained in the memory of those who survived and lived the tragic events of the Pogrom. Nevertheless, these events should be remembered by all of us because forgetting doesn`t erase past mistakes. It just covers them.

„The Iași Pogrom. The MEMORY of places” proposes an inquiry into the city`s past at the end of June 1941. It urges us to discover history the way it is: with dark sides and sometimes, sparkles of hope and human trust. The years have passed, and the city has changed its architecture, but the places which witnessed the tragedy that generated the loss and radical change of the Jews` life in Iași, tell us about the events from those days.

Through the photographs, testimonies, and historical information, the project helps us discover: sites with special symbolism in the history of Iași Pogrom (the train station, the former Police Headquarters, the mass graves, etc.), or places that keep life stories about separations, hope, and death. A memorial tour that urges us to discover and remember!

„The Iași Pogrom. The MEMORY of places” is a project carried out by the „Elie Wiesel” National Institute for the Study of the Holocaust in Romania and Iași Municipality.

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