5: Video excerpt, oral testimony about the Vilna Ghetto.
Only a very small minority of Jews in the Vilna ghetto chose to join the armed resistance, like Sutzkever. Most sought to survive in other, more everyday ways. In this series of testimony excerpts, created by Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center in Israel, survivors talk about life in the ghetto.
Suggested Activity: Watch the video with students, and discuss: What are some of the things people had to do to survive in the Vilna Ghetto? What do you think Raye David (4:06) means when she talks about “passive resistance?” What are some of the different kinds of resistance offered in these testimonies? What are some of the ways in which Sutzkever’s poem—which talks about armed resistance—might be about or relate to these survivors who reacted to their situation in other ways?
Sources: Yad Vashem, “Daily Life in the Vilna Ghetto: Holocaust Survivor Testimonies,” accessed on April 17th, 2019 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WA5ntgngqsk