St Helens libraries are to hold commemorative arts events ahead of Holocaust Memorial Day (27 January) paying homage to the books burned in Berlin in the 1930s.
On the night of May 10, 1933, an event unseen in Europe since the Middle Ages occurred as German students from universities once regarded as among the finest in the world, and leading Nazi party members gathered in Berlin to burn books with ‘un-German’ ideas.
The event was symbolic of the Nazi party’s rise to power, and the fear and hatred that motivated it – leading ultimately to the persecution of about six million Jews and minorities in the Holocaust.
Heinrich Heine, a German-Jewish poet of the 19th Century wrote in his 1820-21 play ‘Almansor’ the now famous warning: “Wherever books are burned, human beings are destined to be burned too,” a powerful prophesy of the Nazi book burnings.
Libraries across the borough will pay homage to those burnt and destroyed books in memorial of the Holocaust with a unique artwork by local book artist Kate Bufton, as part of the new season of the Cultural Hubs arts-in-libraries programme.
Kate is inviting residents to come along to the book folding crafts sessions, to add to a growing mobile artwork. The method involves folding the pages of a book to create beautiful sculptures.
The sessions are part of a series of events called How Can Life Go On? –
the theme for this year’s international Holocaust Memorial Day.
They are free to attend, suitable for all ages and dated as follows:
Thursday, January 12 - 4.45pm to 6.45pm, Newton-le-Willows Library
Saturday, January 14 - 10.30am to 12.30pm, Eccleston Library
Saturday, January 14 - 1.30pm to 3.30pm, Central Library
Saturday, January 21 - 10.30am to 12.30pm, Chester Lane Library