[image-1] In light of this weekend’s tragic mass shooting in a Pittsburgh synagogue, it feels more critical than ever to shine a light on the history of Jewish oppression both abroad and at home.

Tonight the Charleston JCC Filmfest, College of Charleston Jewish Studies Program, and the Charleston Jewish Federation REMEMBER program for Holocaust and Genocide Awareness, hosts a free screening of My Dear Children at Arnold Hall at 7 p.m.

My Dear Children is based on a letter that Feiga Shamis sent two of her children — 20 years after sending them to an orphanage a continent away. The 174 page letter explains why Shamis made the decision she did; the letter describes the anti-Jewish massacres in Eastern Europe following WWI.

According to the film’s website, “The pogroms in the years following the Russian Revolution of 1917 killed tens of thousands of Jews and marked the beginning of the near-obliteration of Jewish life from an area of the world to which nearly 80 percent of the world’s Jewry can trace its roots.”
In the documentary, Shamis’ granddaughter Judy Favish travels to Poland and Ukraine to try to understand the grandmother she never met. A trailer of the film shows Favish traveling to small towns throughout Eastern Europe and meeting with modern residents; when asked how many Jewish citizens remain, the answer is often, “None.”

The film’s co-producer/director LeeAnn Dance will offer a talkback following the screening. A television producer and investigative reporter, Dance owns a boutique production company outside of Washington, D.C.

[embed-1]