The Holocaust in American Fashion

(May 2nd, 2018)

I first came across this post on ABC news and followed it back to a longer article by The Times of Israel.  The granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor decided that she would start a line of jewelry bearing the numbers tattooed on Holocaust victims. She got the idea when she decided that she wanted to feel like her grandmother was always with her, and thought back to the fact that her grandmother always started her testimony off by showing the tattoo she received in Auschwitz. Because of prohibitions against tattooing in the Jewish tradition, she believed that the correct way to honor her grandmother would be to wear her number on a necklace. Now  she runs a full line of jewelry, in which a portion of the proceeds go towards local(Jacksonville, FL) Holocaust education.

This post is different from most of the material we’ve read in class because it looks at how individuals are memorializing the Holocaust rather than how the nation is or isn’t. The reading that looked at how Jews in America were memorializing focused specifically on how they were doing it in the immediate aftermath of the war. This clothing line allows both survivors and non survivors to memorialize. An interesting aspect is that the line also allows you to order triangles in any of the colors that could have been assigned in the camps. Given the findings of my classmates who studied the appropriation of Holocaust symbols, I definitely see how this could also be misused.


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