Lowe Family Lecture Series – Modern Jewish Studies with Polish Scholars

Thursday,September 7th

12 pm MST , 3 pm EDT on Zoom.

Voices of Jewish Child Survivors as an Important Historical Source in Documenting the History of Holocaust and its Aftermath

Joanna Michlic, Lund University (Sweden)

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In this lecture, Prof. Michlic will discuss the late post-war testimonies as secret and communal memories in the early post-war testimonies of the child survivors. She will also show that the late post-war testimonies complement and elaborate in a variety of ways the early post-war testimonies. Her main argument is that the three waves of child survivors’ testimonies must be studied together to understand the full impact of the genocidal past on different stages of young survivors’ lives. Only then can we write the full biography of the generation of young survivors.

Joanna Beata Michlic is a social and cultural historian, and founder and first Director of HBI (Hadassah-Brandeis Institute) Project on Families, Children, and the Holocaust at Brandeis University. She is a Visiting Full Professor of the Holocaust and Contemporary History at University of Lund (2023 -2025) and an Honorary Senior Research Associate at the UCL Centre for the Study of Collective Violence, the Holocaust and Genocide, UCL Institute for Advances Studies, and Research Fellow at Weiss-Livnat International Centre for Holocaust Research and Education, University of Haifa, June 2019 - May 2025.

Tuesday, September 12

12 pm MST, 3 pm EDT on Zoom.

Citizens of Yiddishland, or When Jewish Communists Did Not Cease to Be Jewish

Joanna Nalewajko-Kulikov, Polish Academy of Sciences (Poland)

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Prof. Nalewajko-Kulikov will be devoted to the milieu of Jewish Communists in prewar and postwar Poland who, despite their involvement with the Party, never ceased to identify themselves as Jewish and who felt a deep attachment to the Yiddish language and culture. They mostly survived the war in the USSR, and later headed virtually all Jewish institutions in postwar Poland, such as the Socio-Cultural Association of Jews in Poland (TSKZ) or the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw. In her lecture, she will try to show how they understood their Jewishness, what made them join the Communist party before the war, and what happened to them after the antisemitic campaign of 1968. 

Joanna Nalewajko-Kulikov is Associate Professor at the Tadeusz Manteuffel Institute of History, Polish Academy of Sciences, and editor-in-chief of the English-language journal “Acta Poloniae Historica”. Her research focuses on the history of East European Jews in the 19th & 20th centuries, history of Yiddish press and Polish-Jewish relations.