The Museum of


The Screening Room

A Film by Slawomir Grünberg

The Peretzniks' Polish premiere screenings took place in Lodz on August 29, 2009, at the Nowy Theater, during the 65th Anniversary of the Liquidation of the Litzmannstadt Ghetto and in Warsaw on September 2 at The Jewish Theater during the 6th Festival of Jewish Culture "Singer's Warsaw."

The film tells the story of a Jewish school in Lodz, Poland. The school was closed down following the Communist anti-Semitic campaign, which took place in Poland in 1968. As a result of this, the Peretz School graduates are dispersed today between the US, Israel, Sweden, Poland, and other countries. The bittersweet memories of their youth in post-war Poland is what binds the Peretzniks together till this day.

The events of March '68 are still somewhat obscure in Poland. The political background is known, as are the film archives, and press coverage. However, little is known about how it was to grow up in Poland of the sixties as a Polish Jew, or as a Pole of Jewish origin. How it was to be a kid in the heart of a country still recovering from a horrific war, in a family severed by the Holocaust, and then to come of age and experience first loves at the outbreak of the disturbing March events. The experience of the 'Peretz School' pupils in Lodz in some way reflects the experience of the Jewish minority in Poland in the 50s and 60s of the previous century. It is the experience of adolescents nevertheless, who were much more interested in the Beatles than they were in politics. It was the latter, however, which caused for most of them to scatter all over the world, creating a peculiar phenomenon of a Polish-Jewish Diaspora integrated today in so many countries' identities.

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