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Lessons from Auschwitz: The power of our words - Benjamin Zander

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Classical music mastermind Benjamin Zander concluded his 2008 TED Talk by recounting the heartrending story of an Auschwitz survivor and her brother. This short animated piece highlights that story, reminding us that the words we speak to one another are incredibly powerful tools that we shouldn't take for granted.

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About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Benjamin Zander
  • Producer Seesaw Studios
  • Director Judy Korin
  • Animator Travis Hatfield
  • Collaborator Juan Rosenfeldt
  • Narrator Benjamin Zander
Additional Resources for you to Explore
Benjamin Zander's original TED Talk.
Here's a TED.com Blog post published on Holocaust Remebrance day in 2013.
All over the world, Auschwitz has become a symbol of terror, genocide, and the Holocaust. It was established by Germans in 1940, in the suburbs of Oswiecim, a Polish city that was annexed to the Third Reich by the Nazis. Its name was changed to Auschwitz, which also became the name of Konzentrationslager Auschwitz. The direct reason for the establishment of the camp was the fact that mass arrests of Poles were increasing beyond the capacity of existing "local" prisons. Initially, Auschwitz was to be one more concentration camp of the type that the Nazis had been setting up since the early 1930s. It functioned in this role throughout its existence, even when, beginning in 1942, it also became the largest of the death camps.

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Create and share a new lesson based on this one.

About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Benjamin Zander
  • Producer Seesaw Studios
  • Director Judy Korin
  • Animator Travis Hatfield
  • Collaborator Juan Rosenfeldt
  • Narrator Benjamin Zander