2024 Holocaust Writing & Art Contest Winners

Prompt: Many people and groups resisted the Nazi regime during the Holocaust, like Sophie Scholl and the White Rose and the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. In order to resist the Nazis, people had to be willing to put their life on the line. Why were these acts of resistance important to the Holocaust and how can people show resistance today?


Writing Winners: 

Art Winners:

  • Kayn Meyer, 8th Grade, Williams Bay Middle School – “Eva’s Resistance”
    • Artist’s statement: This is Eva Mozes Kor. She was known for not only surviving the Holocaust but also the acts of Josef Mengele. He injected them with unknown substances, he set Eva up to die and when she didn’t he then set Miriam up to die. But they survived. They fought for their lives whether it was punching, kicking and screaming or just surviving. When Eva came to America she built a museum about her experience and she also learned to forgive. Today, one in five young Americans believe that the holocaust never happened and believe that the survivors were just being dramatic. A lot of people today also have no idea what the holocaust is. I believe that Eva showed an act of resistance by never losing her voice and we shouldn’t either.


  • Nora Synovic, 8th Grade, Milwaukee School of Languages – “The Poison of Fear”
    • Artist’s statement: Fear drives hatred and manipulation. It can push us to be better or cause us to be caged. The cage we think is protecting us is actually built of acid and barbed wire, keeping us controlled and preventing resistance. During the Holocaust, Jews were often beat publicly by Nazis. People would surround the beating and watch. Some would laugh and cheer, others would be horrified but too terrified to step in. They were afraid for their own safety. These people were called bystanders. They knew this was wrong but were stuck in their cage and couldn’t do anything. When no one stood up to protect these innocent Jews, the cycle repeated over and over again. The Nazis continued to abuse them and no one stopped them. They used fear to justify their lack of action. If someone tried to help they’d get beat too. But if no one raised their voice for the weak nothing would ever change. This is why resistance is so important. Without people taking a stand to fight for what’s right, the injustice of the world would continue forever. Never ending. When reflecting on Jewish turmoil, dehumanization, and resistance, I was inspired to create a piece that reflected the harms of the bystander effect. In “The Poison of Fear”, the crowds of people are meant to resemble the bystanders that simply watch without attempting to stop it. In the middle of the bystanders, a Nazi is beating a Jewish girl with a baseball bat. Her face is scribbled over to show how the beating has stripped her of her dignity. This is what the holocaust stood for, stripping these human beings down to nothing. Nobodies. Say what you believe, scream it if no one listens, but never ever stop fighting for what you think is right. Because that is how the world becomes a better place.