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"Jew in a Box" exhibit draws ire....

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Berlin Museum Exhibit Featuring "Jew in the Box" Stirs Controversy and Anger

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Posted Sunday, March 31, 2013, at 12:58 PM

 
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jew in the bo

The base of the box at the Jewish Museum in Berlin exhibit reads: "Are there still Jews in Germany?"

Linus Lintner/Jewish Museum Berlin

Almost 70 years after the Holocaust, Jews have largely disappeared from German life, with a population of fewer than 200,000 among the country's 82 million people. So, what better way to dispel myths and educate the public than placing a Jew in a glass box to answer questions? That is exactly what the Jewish Museum in Berlin decided to do as part of its exhibition "The Whole Truth... everything you always wanted to know about Jews." And needless to say, people aren't too pleased. "Why don't they give him a banana and a glass of water, turn up the heat and make the Jew feel really cozy in his glass box," Stephan J. Kramer, the general Secretary of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, told the Associated Press.

As part of the exhibit, a Jewish man or woman is seated inside the glass box for two hours a day to answer questions. One of the obvious reasons why it has raised eyebrows is that the scene is reminiscent of how infamous Nazi leader Adolf Eichmann sat in a glass booth during his 1961 trial. But several volunteers who actually sit in the box described the experience as artistic expression in itself, an exaggerated take on what they live through every day. "With so few of us, you almost inevitably feel like an exhibition piece," Leeor Englander said.

The publicly funded Berlin Jewish Museum is no stranger to controversy. Last year, it hosted Judith Butler, who called for a boycott of Israel, points out the Jerusalem Post.




by on Apr. 1, 2013 at 10:14 AM
Replies (11-20):
NWP
by guerrilla girl on Apr. 1, 2013 at 11:21 AM

I am loving that there is a great discussion going on here about a work of contemporary art.

This is the whole spirit of the piece and it is fantastic!

Bieg9093
by Bronze Member on Apr. 1, 2013 at 11:38 AM
1 mom liked this

 I think they ought to give him an ottoman.  I wouldn't want to sit in a box if I couldn't put my feet up.

Peanutx3
by Ruby Member on Apr. 1, 2013 at 11:44 AM
2 moms liked this

I think you nailed it with that statement.  

Quoting Bookwormy:

I think it's offensive & brilliant at the same time. They put us in boxes against our will & now we will put ourselves there to demonstrate how few of us there are left. It's art & so much of art makes it's point through offense & controversy. They killed so much of us out that we need a box at the museum. Offensive, controversial, & brilliant.



LiliMama18
by Member on Apr. 1, 2013 at 11:55 AM
I am not Jewish but I don't see how this could be seen as offensive- unless the person in the box was forced to be there- which they're obviously not.
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Bookwormy
by Platinum Member on Apr. 1, 2013 at 11:58 AM
LOL!

I *love* your avatar, btw!


Quoting Bieg9093:

 I think they ought to give him an ottoman.  I wouldn't want to sit in a box if I couldn't put my feet up.


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Bieg9093
by Bronze Member on Apr. 1, 2013 at 12:19 PM

 Thank You!!

Quoting Bookwormy:

LOL!

I *love* your avatar, btw!


Quoting Bieg9093:

 I think they ought to give him an ottoman.  I wouldn't want to sit in a box if I couldn't put my feet up.


 

NWP
by guerrilla girl on Apr. 1, 2013 at 1:04 PM
Absolutely agree with this!

Quoting Bookwormy:

I think it's offensive & brilliant at the same time. They put us in boxes against our will & now we will put ourselves there to demonstrate how few of us there are left. It's art & so much of art makes it's point through offense & controversy. They killed so much of us out that we need a box at the museum. Offensive, controversial, & brilliant.
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Mommy_of_Riley
by Jes on Apr. 1, 2013 at 1:08 PM
1 mom liked this
The Jews in the box answering questions don't have a problem with it so....
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DragonMother10
by on Apr. 1, 2013 at 1:20 PM
I don't think they are being forced to sit in a box, I am sure there have been people who said "No." and found people who said "Yes."

On the other side of the coin, my husband was born and raised in Germany. His granfather was a young boy during WWII. I mentioned this story on another post. My husband's great-grandparents were Nazis, but didn't agree with Hilter, however they did not want to go against him either. My husband's granfather had a Jewish friend from Poland who they would hide from Nazi soldiers. One day they were outside playing and in the midst of it, there was chaos from fighting going on. Sadly as his granfather's friend was hit with a grenade and his grandfather got hit with shrapnel but did not realize it until he ran home. It was quite a shock for his granfather to witness such a tragedy. My husband says his granfather remembers that day but it shut him off emotionally. I couldn't imagine what it was like to live during those times in Germany. Neither could my husband.
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terpmama
by Silver Member on Apr. 1, 2013 at 1:31 PM
Maybe I read it wrong but the Jewish community isn't offended te other Germans are.
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