Critical Thinking/Discussion Questions - Claire Kahane

  1. Discuss the factors that led Claire Kahane's family to leave Europe, and what obstacles they had to overcome.
  2. How does Claire Kahane's young age impact her ability to adapt to the massive changes her family faced?
  3. In what ways would youth be a strength as a refugee fleeing the Nazis? In what ways would it be a weakness?
  4. Watch Claire’s video. Claire tells that one of her earliest recollections is that of trying to eat a good meal in a restaurant with a window, while hungry children stood outside and watched. (4:36). Many Holocaust survivors think that if more people had acted during the Holocaust that this crisis may have been prevented. What does Claire’s story teach us about indifference? We know that indifference still exists in our society today. What can you do to help ensure that we are not indifferent to those who need our help today?
  5.  Discuss the obstacles Claire’s family overcame in order to leave Europe. What effect did this process have on the three-year-old Claire, as she accompanied her mother daily to the consulates and waited in lines there? Consider this quotation from Claire’s interview during the discussion:

    "My memories are very, very fragmented really, since I was quite a young child. Last year I was in New York City at the funeral of my father-in-law, and someone came up to me and said, 'I remember you.  I remember you playing with my child and you had this game that made us so sad. Every day you played in the sandbox and you played the same game: Were gonna go to the consulate to get the visa, the visa is not granted so well try again tomorrow.' And it really, really brought tears to my eyes that's what I played as a child."