A Web video depicting an elderly Holocaust survivor, his daughter and grandchildren dancing at Auschwitz and other Nazi-era concentration camp sites to Gloria Gaynor’s disco hit “I Will Survive” has sparked controversy from Australia to the United States to Israel.
The video was originally posted to YouTube, which removed it because of alleged copyright infringement. Here’s the video:
Haaretz, the Israeli newspaper, reported that “Australian Jewish artist Jane Korman filmed her three children and her father, 89-year-old Holocaust survivor [Adolek Kohn], in the video clip ‘I Will Survive: Dancing Auschwitz.’
The clip depicted the Korman family dancing in front of Holocaust landmarks in Poland, including infamous entrance sign to Auschwitz death camp reading “Arbeit Macht Frei,” a Polish synagogue, Dachau, Theresienstadt, and a memorial in Lodz.
Her father at one point in the clip even wore a shirt on which the word “Survivor” was written.
During a recent family visit to Israel Korman said that she thought of the idea after she encountered hatred towardÂ IsraelÂ and Jews inÂ AustraliaÂ and added that she wanted to give her concerns presence during the heritage tour ofÂ PolandÂ she recently took with her family, and take a different approach to the matter.
The Haaretz story noted that many Jewish survivors “have reacted gravely to the video, accusing her of disrespect. Yet Korman told Australian daily The Jewish News that ‘it might be disrespectful, but he [her father] is saying ‘we’re dancing, we should be dancing, we’re celebrating our survival and the generations after me’ — the generation he’s created. We are affirming our existence.”
In an interview with BBC World Service, Korman said that shooting the video at sites of mass murder during the Shoah was “extremely awkward and uncomfortable, but I had to do it.”