Righteous without borders - new virtual exhibition at POLIN Museum
POLIN Museum has launched a new virtual exhibition dedicated to people and organizations which are engaged in a struggle for human rights and human dignity. The exhibition’s protagonists are the holders of the Righteous Among the Nations medal, and those awarded by the Garden of the Righteous Committee in the Wola district of Warsaw, but also people whose attitudes are closely related to the values promoted by the Righteous and may serve as a model and moral signpost for others. The exhibition was produced in cooperation with the History Meeting House.
The exhibition presents 28 people and organizations which - at different times and in various places around the globe - refused to remain helpless and took up the initiative. Their stories – illustrated by quotations and photographs – are linked by perseverance in acting for the benefit of others and the entire world. The Righteous’ attitudes cross borders – they have universal dimension which goes beyond a specific time or nation.
“We created this exhibition to make people realize that the Righteous are among us. They extend a helping hand to others, especially to those in need. In the face of wars, crimes or terror, they defend human dignity and human rights. We do believe that each of us can discover a Righteous side to themselves,” says Karolina Dzięciołowska, author of the exhibition Righteous Without Borders. Acting for the sake of dignity and human rights.
The notion of the Righteous refers to the title ‘Righteous Among the Nations’ coined by the Yad Vashem Institute in Jerusalem which since 1963 has been presenting the title to those who had rescued Jews from certain death during the Holocaust. The Righteous – in a broader sense – is a person who, in different countries and at various times in most recent history, risked their lives or freedom to defend human dignity and human rights.
The exhibition Righteous Without Borders. Acting for the sake of dignity and human rights portrays people from all corners of the globe, i.a. Jan Karski, Nelson Mandela, Władysław Bartoszewski, Marek Edelman, David Nott, Antonia Locatelli or Rosa Parks. It draws attention to the contemporary Righteous who face the effects of the civil war in Syria and care about the fate of refugees. Amongst those presented in the exhibition are: the White Helmets, an organization rescuing victims of bombings in Syria, or Dr Pietro Bartolo, who welcomes and treats the refugees from Africa on the Italian island of Lampedusa.
Aside from promoting attitudes and values, the exhibition aims at inspiring its viewers to undertake initiative in the real world. “While working on the exhibition, we hoped to step beyond the virtual world and inspire our visitors to get involved in relief efforts. In the “Be active, be helpful” section we have posted information on organizations one should contact to support those who need our help the most today,” says Klara Jackl, coordinator of the “Polish Righteous – Recalling Forgotten History” at POLIN Museum.
Supported from the Norway and EEA Grants by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.