Defiance and Protest. Forgotten Individual Jewish Resistance in Nazi Germany

Department: Jewish Studies

Date and Time: November 8, 2017 | 5:00 PM-8:00 PM

Event Location: Humanities Gateway 1010

Event Details

Jewish resistance during the Holocaust is mostly understood as rare armed group activities in the Nazi occupied East. By contrast, based on a new approach that focuses on individual acts and uses new sources, the talk will demonstrate that Jews in Nazi Germany proper performed countless acts of resistance between 1933 and 1945. The results of this research promise to change dramatically the common misperception of a passive Jewish population under persecution and show in what unbelievable ways many of the Jews resisted.

Guest Speaker: Wolf Gruner

Wolf Gruner holds the Shapell-Guerin Chair in Jewish Studies, is Professor of History at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles since 2008 and is the Founding Director of the USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research since 2014.

He is a specialist in the history of the Holocaust and in comparative genocide studies. He received his PhD in History in 1994 from the Technical University Berlin as well as his Habilitation in 2006. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University, Yad Vashem Jerusalem, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, Women’s Christian University Tokyo, and the Center for Jewish Studies Berlin, and the Desmond E. Lee Visiting Professor for Global Awareness at Webster University in St. Louis.

He is the author of ten books on the Holocaust, among them “Jewish Forced Labor under the Nazis. Economic Needs and Nazi Racial Aims”, with Cambridge University Press (paperback 2008), as well as over 60 academic articles and book chapters. He also coedited two books, one of them, the translated updated book “The Greater German Reich and the Jews. Nazi Persecution Policies in the Annexed Territories 1935-1945” was published in 2015 with Berghahn Books. Its original German edition received an award for most outstanding German studies in humanities and social sciences in 2012. In 2015, Gruner published on the discrimination against the indigenous population in post-colonial Bolivia the book „Parias de la Patria“. El mito de la liberación de los indígenas en la República de Bolivia 1825-1890”, in Spanish with Plural Editores, Bolivia. Gruner’s most recent book deals with the Persecution of the Jews in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia and their responses 1939-45 (Wallstein, Goettingen, Germany, 2016). This book received the award for most outstanding German studies in humanities and social sciences in 2017.

He is a member of the International Academic Advisory board of the Center for the Research on the Holocaust in Germany at Yad Vashem’s International Institute for Holocaust Research, Jerusalem (since 2012), a member of the International Advisory Board of the Journal of Genocide Research (since 2010). He served as a member of the Yad Vashem 2014 International research Book prize committee. For the 2016 biannual international conference on the Holocaust “Lessons and Legacies”, he served as the co-chair of the academic program.