Upcoming Seminar on Teaching Holocaust Literature; Applications due October 21

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum has issued a call for applications for participation in the 2014 Jack and Anita Hess Faculty Seminar, “Holocaust Literature: Teaching Fiction and Poetry,” which will run January 3-8, 2014.

The Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies announces the 2014 Jack and Anita Hess Faculty Seminar. This year’s Hess Seminar is designed for professors who are teaching or preparing to teach English, Jewish studies, modern languages, literature, or other courses that have a Holocaust-related literature component. Sessions will focus on imaginative responses to the Holocaust created by a variety of writers, from those writing during the Holocaust to survivors to second generation authors to those without an explicit family connection to this event.

The seminar will be co-led by Anita Norich, from the Department of English Language and Literature and the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies at University of Michigan, and Erin McGlothlin, from the Departments of Germanic Languages and Literatures and of Jewish, Islamic and Near Eastern Languages and Cultures at Washington University in St. Louis.

Applications are due on October 21, 2013. For application guidelines, please visit the museum’s website.

Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
Every Friday morning My Machberet presents an assortment of Jewish literary news from around the Web.

  • First up: This week’s New Yorker features a new story by Lara Vapnyar, “Fischer vs. Spassky.” Bonus: Deborah Treisman’s Q&A with Vapnyar about the story.
  • Next: Nina Badzin reviews a new anthology titled Living Jewishly: A Snapshot of a Generation.
  • I learned about the life and work of poet Naomi Replansky this week thanks to Benjamin Ivry’s coverage for The Forward.
  • “On October 16, Leo Baeck Institute will unveil DigiBaeck – a comprehensive digital version of its collections to be made available to all for free online. DigiBaeck encompasses more than 3.5 million pages of documents from German-Jewish history.” Attend the launch (or watch streaming video online).
  • Writing a Jewish-themed YA novel? “In honor of Jewish Book Month, The Whole Megillah is hosting its second annual Write Your Own Megillah event. Think of it as the Jewish equivalent of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). From November 7 through December 7, 2012, you’ll have the opportunity to write the novel you’ve always wanted to write.”
  • Shabbat shalom.

    “We Are Still Here,” A Documentary Film by Evan Kleinman


    It’s no secret that I have a special interest in how members of the so-called “third generation” have responded to their family Holocaust histories. And that interest motivated me to attend an event here in New York City last week: a screening of Evan Kleinman’s documentary, “We Are Still Here.” Held at the Museum of Tolerance (which I was visiting for the first time), the screening was co-sponsored by the Museum and The Blue Card Fund‘s Young Leadership Division.

    The film introduces us to Evan’s family, including his Polish-born paternal grandparents. It documents a journey to Poland undertaken by Evan, his parents, and his sister. The audience at our screening was especially privileged to have all of these Kleinmans (and others!) in attendance last week.

    I was reminded, yet again, that every time you may think you’ve heard all of the “Holocaust stories” there are to tell, you’re proven wrong. And there’s something truly remarkable when it’s those who “are still here” who do the storytelling.

    The next screening of “We Are Still Here” will take place in Boston on August 23rd. If you have the opportunity to attend, seize it.

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
  • The latest Rockower Awards–for excellence in Jewish journalism–have been announced. Mazel tov to all of the honorees. Special kudos to some bylines/pubs/websites you’ve seen me reference here on My Machberet: Judy Bolton-Fasman, Andrew Silow-Caroll/New Jersey Jewish Week, The Jewish Week, Jewish Women’s Archive, & JTA.
  • Coming in 2015: a new Jewish arts festival.
  • Much sooner, the house in Brazil where refugee author Stefan Zweig and his wife committed suicide together in 1942–the Casa Stefan Zweig–will open as a museum. Benjamin Ivry revisits this author’s history for The Forward.
  • The Jewish Journal‘s Jonathan Kirsch offers some suggestions for summer reading.
  • Themed “Translation/Transformation,” the new Ilanot Review features work by Etgar Keret and Margot Singer and an interview with Evan Fallenberg, among other wonderful items. (I’m thrilled that Lebensraum,” a story from Quiet Americans, is also part of this issue.)
  • Shabbat shalom!

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
  • It’s always a good week when the quarterly Jewish Book World arrives in the mail. I’ll signal to you the essays from Sami Rohr Prize winner Gal Beckerman, Rohr Choice Award winner Abigail Green, and Rohr finalist Ruth Franklin. (You can download a digital copy here.)
  • Next up: How about an anthology featuring work by women writers from the Middle East? Great idea! Just leave out the Israelis, please. Or else. (Can you imagine the response if it had been an Israeli author who campaigned for the exclusion of Palestinians?)
  • Benjamin Ivry writes about Swedish-Jewish novelist Stephan Mendel-Enk.
  • Job alert: “The Yiddish Book Center seeks a Program Manager to join a dynamic cultural organization and to join its education team. The program manager will oversee an exciting new national education program designed and led by the Book Center. The program targets Jews in their 20s and will offer week-long sessions exploring diverse aspects of modern Jewish culture and creativity.”
  • “As the publishing world waits with baited breath for the opening of Book Expo America this weekend, the Museum of Jewish Heritage is doing its part by bringing together authors from the Museum family to talk books with visitors. Six survivors and one survivor/US Army vet who have written books – or whose story is told in a book – will sit at tables in the lobby and talk about their books and their experiences during the war.” If you’ll be in NYC this Sunday, consider stopping by for this free event.
  • Shabbat shalom!

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
  • The application deadline is approaching for “Great Jewish Books,” a new, free summer program for rising high school juniors and seniors at the Yiddish Book Center. Listen to the Yiddish Book Center’s Academic Director, Josh Lambert, speak with Aaron Lansky about the program, and about an exemplary short story: Philip Roth’s “Defender of the Faith.”
  • The March 2012 issue of Poetry magazine features a section on “The Poetry of Kabbalah.”
  • The archives of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee are going online. Joseph Berger’s article includes the tidbit that Canadian author David Bezmozgis “is working on a novel about the Jewish experience in Crimea. He has tapped the archives to research a Joint-sponsored movement in the 1920s and ’30s to turn penniless shtetl and ghetto Jews into farmers on Soviet collective farms.”
  • Last Sunday, I went to see the Emma Lazarus exhibition at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. It will be there for several more months. Try to see it!
  • It’s not online, but my latest poem, “Dayenu” is featured in the new (March-April) issue of Moment magazine. (Page 28 for all of you subscribers!). But Clifford May’s important essay is online.
  • Shabbat shalom!