April 28, 2003
UCSC to present major conference May
3-5 on Rethinking
By Scott Rappaport
The UCSC Jewish Studies Program and the Holocaust Center of Northern
California will present a three-day conference titled
Anti-Semitism: The Holocaust and the Contemporary
World," May 3-5,
at Stevenson College.
This stamp, which includes the names of some World War II
concentration camps, was issued in Czechoslovakia as a remembrance
of the Holocaust.
This event will feature prominent scholars from the United States,
Poland, England, Hungary, Israel, and South Africa, who will examine
anti-Semitism from both a historical and contemporary
is free and open to the public.
Dr. Yehuda Bauer, one of the world's premier historians of
will be a featured guest speaker at the conference. He is
director of the Center for Contemporary Jewry at Hebrew University in
Jerusalem, and director emeritus of Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Museum
in Israel. Bauer will join several of his colleagues in
developments in the Middle East and Europe, including
Although the Holocaust became a major subject of scholarly
in the 1960s, recent developments suggest that the time has come for
a reappraisal of the subject of anti-Semitism. For example,
news reports gathered by the Anti-Defamation League and
tell of a recent worldwide resurgence of anti-Semitism, particularly
in the wake of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
"There has never been this kind of conference
connecting the Holocaust
to contemporary anti-Semitism," notes Murray
of English and comparative literature at UCSC and co-coordinator of
the event. "This conference is a timely and important
to challenge current assumptions and refocus perceptions
Participants in the conference will examine the varieties
during the Holocaust and in the current crisis, the
populist and government-inspired anti-Semitism, and its
in literature, cinema, and popular culture.
The conference will begin at 7 p.m. on May 3 with a keynote address
by UCSC history professor and conference co-coordinator Peter Kenez.
Distinguished Hungarian director Peter Forgacs will then
film Danube Exodus and participate in a panel
the screening. Professor Bauer will deliver the plenary
address on May
4 at 11:15 a.m. (He will also give a second address at Sonoma State
University on May 6, and will speak in San Francisco at
on May 7).
Conference exhibits will include a multimedia installation
the ongoing history of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, a
fraudulent tract describing a supposed Jewish plot for
that is known to be an invention of the intelligence
services of Czarist
Russia. Reprinted copies of the book have recently been found across
the globe from Baghdad to Hoboken, N.J.
An extensive exhibit from the Neufeld Family Archive will also be presented
at the conference. Anne Frederika Neufeld Levin and her family escaped
from Austria and immigrated to the United States in 1939. In 1996, she
donated the Neufeld Family Archive to the UCSC Librarys Special
Collections and established the Neufeld Levin Endowed Chair in Holocaust
Studies at the campus. Professors Baumgarten and Kenez are co-holders
of the Neufeld Levin Chair.
For more information, visit the conference web
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