Berger Family Holocaust Lecture
Endowed by Drs. Robert and Patricia (’62, P’96) Berger
Protectors of Pluralism: Religious Rescue Networks during the Holocaust
The Berger Family Holocaust Lecture
Robert Braun, University of California (Berkeley)
Wednesday, March 30, 2022 / 7:00 pm / Diamond 141
Why did some religious groups protect Jews during the Holocaust while others did not? This talk argues that local religious minorities were more likely to protect for two reasons. First, religious minorities were better equipped to set up clandestine organizations because their members were more committed and insular. Second, religious minorities empathized with targets of purification campaigns. A wide range of sources from across Occupied Europe reveal that Protestants were more likely to rescue Jews in Catholic regions while Catholics facilitated evasion in Protestant areas, underlining that it is the local position of church communities – and not something inherent to any religion itself – that produces networks of assistance to threatened neighbors.
- 2020-21 — Michael Brenner, “Jewish Responses to the Rise of Hitler”
- 2018-19 — Natasha Goldman, “Holocaust Memory in East and West Germany”
- 2017-18 — Hilary Earl, “From Perpetrators of Genocide to Ordinary Germans: The Transformation of Nazi War Criminals in Postwar Germany”
- 2016-17 — Eric Weitz, “The Holocaust and Other Twentieth-Century Genocides: A Comparative Approach”
- 2015-16 — Marianne Hirsch, “Improbable Images: School Photos in Holocaust Europe”
- 2014-15 — Olivier Wieviorka, “The French and the Jews during the Holocaust: Persecution, Resistance, and Rescue”
- 2013-14 — Jeffrey Herf, “Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World during the Holocaust–and Its Aftereffects and Echoes in Recent Years”
- 2012-13 — Gerhard Weinberg, “Pope Pius XII in World War II”
- 2011-12 — Robert O. Paxton, “Vichy France and the Jews: Shield or Traitor?” audio file
- 2010-11 — Hasia Diner, “Not a Silent Generation: Post-War American Jews and the Memory of the Holocaust”
- 2009-10 — Joanna Michlic, “The Memory of the Holocaust in Poland”
- 2008-09 — Peter Hayes, “The Holocaust: Myths and Misunderstandings”
- 2007-08 — Doris Bergen, “The Challenges of Studying the Holocaust”
- 2006-07 — Christopher Browning, “Remembering Survival: The Factory Slave Labor Camps of Starachowice, Poland”
- 2005-06 — Phillip Silver, “Hitler’s ‘Model Camp’: Jews, Music, and Resistance at Terezin, 1941-1944”
The Annual Lipman Lecture in Jewish Studies
Endowed by the Lipman Family, this distinguished lecture has attracted a variety of important speakers to Colby since 1979, including Nobel Prize winner Elie Wiesel (1986) and renowned author Chaim Potok (1989).
Masha Gessen: “Where the Jews Aren’t: The Sad and Absurd Story of Birobidzhan, Russia’s Jewish Autonomous Region”
The 2018-19 annual Lipman Lecture in Jewish Studies
October 18, 2018 / 7:00 pm / Ostrove Auditorium (Diamond Building)
Masha Gessen is the author of the National Book Award-winning The Future is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia as well as The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin, The Brothers: The Road to an American Tragedy. The book that shares its title with this lecture reveals the complex, strange, and heart-wrenching account of the dream of Birobidzhan—and the true history of Jewish people in twentieth-century Russia. Gessen, a staff writer at The New Yorker who teaches at Amherst College, is the recipient of numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and a Carnegie Fellowship.
- 2017-18 — Anthony Wexler, “Israel and the New American Jewish Novel”
- 2016-17 — Nathan Englander, “What We Talk About: Writing in Uncertain Times”
- 2015-16 — Ori Gersht, “Seeing and Believing”
- 2014-15 — Gershom Gorenberg, “The Battle for History: Israeli and Palestinian Narratives in War and Peacemaking”
- 2012-13 — Etgar Keret, “Is Reality Overrated?”
- 2011-12 — Jonathan Safran Foer, “When Jews Laugh at Things That Aren’t Funny”
- 2010-11 — Tom Segev, “Simon Wiesenthal, Nazi Hunter: The Man who Refused to Forget”
- 2009-10 — David Bame, “A Faith in Peace: Current U.S. Policy Issues in the Middle East”
- 2008-09 — Michael Wex, “Just Say Nu: Yiddish from the Jewish Shtetl to the American Heartland”
- 2007-08 — Jonathan Sarna, “The Furture of the American Jew: American Judaism in the 21st Century”
- 2006-07 — Deborah Lipstadt, “In Every Generation They Wish to Destroy Us: Anti-Semitism and Anti-Israelism as Factors in Jewish Identity”
- 2005-06 — Jerry Fowler, “Creating a Constituency of Conscience: The Role of Holocaust Remembrance in Combating Contemporary Genocide”
The Jewish Studies Program is also grateful to Barry and Judith Bronstein (P’96) for endowing the Bronstein Fund for Jewish Studies and Holocaust Studies, whose funds support a variety of Jewish Studies programs.
Listen to, watch, or read select talks sponsored by the Jewish Studies Program at your convenience!
Ancient Antisemitism Reconsidered
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Avi Avidov, Beit Berl College, Israel
September 30, 2014
What is antisemitism and how long has it been with us? Given that the term itself is coinage from late 19th century, can we find validity in its applications to more or less similar phenomena in earlier periods? If we assume that some unique traits of this particular form of out-group hatred justify such a procedure, why have the Jews, of all people, remained at the at the receiving end in this unique and repeated fashion throughout the ages? Avidov, the author of Not Reckoned Among Nations: The Origins of the So-Called Jewish Question in Roman Antiquity, explains the emergence and persistence of antisemitism by focusing on structural similarities of the Jews’ position within the larger socio-political entities into which they repeatedly failed to integrate fully.
Sponsored by the Classics Department, the Religious Studies Department, and the Jewish Studies Program.
Diversity on the Israeli Street: Sesame Workshop’s Rechov Sumsum Project
Click here to watch the YouTube video
Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2014
Sesame Workshop, the non-profit educational organization behind Sesame Street, has worked with local production teams to develop over 30 different adaptations of the acclaimed children’s media program, Sesame Street. This presentation offers a window into the process of creating Rechov Sumsum, the award-winning Israeli version of the series. A producer and an educator, each of whom have been a part of the Sesame Street process for over 20 years, walk participants through Sesame Workshop’s production methodology and its specific application in Israel. The presentation includes a screening of video content from the series’ decades-long history and highlights the ways in which messages about the diversity of Israeli society are incorporated into program content and design. The presenters also discuss evidence from research about the educational effects of the program and its focus on diversity.
Part of the Jewish Studies Program’s Perspectives on Israel series, made possible in part by the Legacy Heritage Jewish Studies Project, directed by the Association for Jewish Studies (AJS). Support for the Legacy Heritage Jewish Studies Project is generously provided by Legacy Heritage Fund Limited. Co-sponsored by the Education Department and the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life. Image TM and © 2014 Sesame Workshop. All rights reserved.
An Enduring Peace: Egypt-Israel Relations in Historical Perspective
Click here to listen to this talk, as broadcast on MBPN radio.
John Turner, Colby College
April 7, 2014
The peace treaty of 1979 between Egypt and Israel is of lasting importance to the Middle East and the world. How was it achieved and why does it endure? Prof. Turner offers historical context for understanding the continuing interactions between the two countries.
A Perspectives on Israel event, made possible in part by the Legacy Heritage Jewish Studies Project, directed by the Association for Jewish Studies (AJS). Support for the Legacy Heritage Jewish Studies Project is generously provided by Legacy Heritage Fund Limited.
States, Regimes, Revolutions, Counter-Revolutions–How Can We Find Our Way in the Middle East of 2013?
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The Annual Lipman Lecture in Jewish Studies
Ephraim Halevy, Former Director of the Mossad
October 2, 2013
Ephraim Halevy directed Israel’s national intelligence agency from 1998-2002 and has also served as chairman of Israel’s national security council. He played a pivotal role in bringing about Israel’s peace treaty with Jordan.
Sponsored by the Lipman Family; co-sponsored by the Jewish studies program and the Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement.
Will the Real Biblical God Please Stand Up?
Listen to the lecture, and view the slides.
The Compagna-Sennett Lecture in Religious Studies
Marc Brettler, Brandeis University
September 16, 2013
Who is God? Good question. Throughout history people around the world have been willing to sacrifice their lives, and end of the lives of others, in the name of the divine. But what does the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) actually say about what God is like and how the divine operates in the world? Come explore the many faces and facets of God presented in the Hebrew Bible, and how the multiple renderings of God might impact how we view the Bible as a whole.
Marc Zvi Brettler, the Dora Golding Professor of Biblical Studies at Brandeis University, is an award-winning teacher and author. He has written and co-edited numerous books, including The Jewish Study Bible and, most recently, The Bible and the Believer: How to Read the Bible Critically and Religiously.
This event, made possible by the Association for Jewish Studies Distinguished Lectureship Program, was co-sponsored by the religious studies department and Jewish studies program.
Vichy France and the Jews: Shield or Traitor?
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The Annual Berger Holocaust Lecture
Robert O. Paxton, Columbia University
April 5, 2012