Critical Thinking/Discussion Questions - Olivia Newman

1. Olivia’s story is a remarkable one of surviving the war by hiding in the open. If two Jews can live as Germans in Germany during the war, what does this say about Nazi “race theory”? Click the link below for more information about the theory.

“Nazi Racial Science”

(n.d.). Retrieved April 29, 2017, from

2. It was only after her mother’s death that Olivia learned of her extraordinary survival story. Her mother never spoke of it with her. Today, we know more about how individuals respond to traumatic events, and that many survivors of trauma suffer from PTSD: post traumatic stress disorder. Why do you think her mother did not want to discuss this with her after the war? Use the resources linked below to prepare your answer.

“Post traumatic stress disorder”

(n.d.). Retrieved April 29, 2017, from

“Psychological Trauma and the Holocaust”

(n.d.). Retrieved April 29, 2017, from

3. Olivia found out about her story from her mother’s diary, which is considered a primary source. This diary is crucial to Olivia’s understanding of her history. Do you keep a diary? Do you think technology and social media has caused people to not keep diaries? Do you think social media qualifies as a primary source?

Use the links below to inform your answers:

“Primary and secondary sources in history”

(n.d.). Retrieved April 29, 2017, from

“Why Do Historians Value Letters and Diaries?”

(n.d.). Retrieved April 29, 2017, from

“Social Media as a Primary Source”

(n.d.). Retrieved April 29, 2017, from

4. Anne Frank is the most well known story of hiding during the Holocaust. How did Anne’s experience as a hidden child differ from Olivia’s?

Click the link below to view “Remembering Anne Frank” and review the film and Timeline of Olivia Newman to research your answer.

Remembering Anne Frank PDF 

5. Write a diary entry of at least three pages describing your current life with the intended audience being your future relatives.