A LECTURER and student from the University of Winchester discuss the Holocaust and what freedom means in a new podcast.

The university is releasing the podcast to mark Holocaust Memorial Day on Saturday, January 27.

Dr Emily Stiles, lecturer in modern history and PhD student Lucy Dixon explore the theme of this year’s commemorations – The Fragility of Freedom.

Lucy’s research focuses on ordinary women in Nazi Germany and their level of complicity in the Holocaust. During their discussion, the pair question what freedom means to one another.

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Lucy said: “There is always an opportunity to learn from the Holocaust whether it’s a formal setting or through personal reading and research. In my opinion, you can learn ‘best’ from the Holocaust when you have the freedom to think about it from as many different angles as possible.”

Dr Stiles, the author of Holocaust Memory and National Museums in Britain, was recently appointed President-Elect of the British and Irish Association for Holocaust Studies. She hopes to use the role to widen public engagement in Holocaust studies.

Dr Stiles said: “There is some really specific and interesting research going on at the moment and we need to make it accessible to more of the public.”

Hampshire Chronicle: Dr Emily Stiles and Lucy Dixon recording the podcastDr Emily Stiles and Lucy Dixon recording the podcast (Image: University of Winchester)

Holocaust Memorial Day is on January 27, the anniversary of the Red Army’s liberation of the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau. The day remembers the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis and other groups who were subject to Nazi persecution, as well as those murdered in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

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This year marks the 30th anniversary of the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda but that landmark is likely to be overshadowed by the fallout from the conflict in Gaza.

Emily believes the war in Gaza has sparked a steep rise in antisemitism but suggested that the public should separate the actions of the Israeli government from the wider Jewish community across the world.

To promote future understanding, Emily wants to start a Jewish History Month. She said: “The only connection that many people have with Jews is through the Holocaust and that’s not healthy.

“They are not just a persecuted people. Jews have a rich cultural history in which persecution is only one part albeit an enduring one.”

To listen to the podcast, edited and co-produced by third-year journalism student Owen Noon, search for The University of Winchester on Spotify.