2009 Archives

SMU Holocaust Series to Spotlight Somber Legacies

September 2, 2009

SMU’s Human Rights Education Program is co-sponsoring a three-month series of powerful lectures, symposiums, film screenings, photography exhibits and musical performances examining how the Holocaust continues to affect us today.

“Holocaust Legacies: Shoah as Turning Point” begins Wednesday, Sept. 9 with a 7 p.m. reception and a 7:30 p.m. introductory panel discussion in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Forum.  The program will run through the end of November with events held both on and off the SMU campus, and all events are free and open to the public.

Panel members on Sept. 9 will include Christopher Anderson, Associate Professor of Sacred Music in the Perkins School of Theology; Janis Bergman-Carlton, art history chair in the Meadows School of the Arts; Elliott Dlin, executive director of the Dallas Holocaust Museum; Rick Halperin, director of SMU’s Human Rights Education Program and Tom Mayo, director of SMU’s Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility.

Rick Halperin
Rick Haperin

Halperin, who each December escorts educational groups to former Nazi death camp locations in Poland, is committed to raising awareness of what he calls “the crime within the war,” even as the number of people who lived through the war, and the Holocaust, dwindles with each passing year. September marks the 70th anniversary of the Nazi German invasion of Poland and beginning of World War II.

“It’s safe to say most Americans don’t think about World War II any more,” Halperin said. “We fought the war, defeated the Nazis, and came home the good guys. We mushroomed into a world power.  Most Americans since then have lived a relatively safe and comfortable life.”

But the legacy of the Holocaust continues at many levels, Halperin said:  The Nazis committed the greatest art theft in history, looting the collections of Jewish families whose descendents are still litigating to see their treasures returned. All major war crime tribunals bear the stamp of the post-World War II Nuremburg Trials, and the United States in May deported a nearly 90-year-old man, John Demjanjuk, for Nazi war crimes.

Halperin noted that in Europe, sensitivity to the Shoah’s legacy is reflected even in restrictions to how people talk and write about the Nazi regime. “You can buy a copy of Adolph Hitler’s Mein Kampf in the SMU Book Store – that’s free speech,” Halperin explained. “You can deny the Holocaust in the U.S., and that’s free speech, too. You can’t do that in Europe.“ Halperin said he expects the series to be “a powerful, emotional, somber and sobering series of events.”


September 9
Holocaust Legacies: Shoah as Turning Point
Opening reception and panel discussion
SMU Hughes-Trigg Student Center Forum
7 p.m.
September 10 (two events)
Seminar on the Polish Reception of Neighbors and Fear
Jan Gross, Princeton University
University of Dallas, 1845 E. Northgate Dr., Irving, 75062
Gorman Faculty Lounge
3:30 p.m.

The Killing and Plunder of the Jews by Their Neighbors in Nazi-Occupied Poland
Speaker:  Professor Jan Gross, Princeton University (History), author of Neighbors and Fear
Hughes-Trigg Student Center Forum
7-10 p.m.

September 11
There Was a Forest:  Jews in Eastern Europe Today
Loli Kantor, Photographer
Artist’s Lecture:  O'Donnell Lecture Hall, SMU Meadows School of the Arts, 6 p.m.
Reception: Taubman Atrium, SMU Meadows School of the Arts, 7 p.m.
(Photo Exhibit through Nov. 15, Hawn Gallery, Hamon Arts Library

September 17
From the Nuremberg Code to the Belmont Report and the Final Rule:  The Protection of Human Research Subjects in the 21st Century

Lecture and Panel Discussion:  Professor Thomas Beauchamp, Georgetown University, primary author of the Belmont Report
SMU McCord Auditorium, Dallas Hall, 3rd Floor
7 p.m.

October 8
Beyond the Victim Monument
Speaker:  Professor Kirk Savage, University of Pittsburgh (Art History), author, Standing Soldiers, Kneeling Slaves: Race, War, and Monuments in Nineteenth-Century America
The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza, 411 Elm Street, Dallas, 75202
5:30 - 6:30 p.m.

October 22
The Holocaust in Contemporary Consciousness, Culture and Curriculum
Speaker: Elliott Dlin, Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center for Education and Tolerance
Dallas Holocaust Museum, 211 N. Record Street #100, Dallas, 75202
Reception following presentation
7 – 9:30 p.m.


November 5, 2009  (two events)
Ethical Dilemmas Facing Defense Attorneys in War-Crime Trials
Professor Jenia Turner, SMU Dedman School of Law
Maguire Public Scholar Lecture (Cary M. Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility)
SMU Umphrey Lee Center Ballroom
11:30 light buffet
Noon lecture 

God on Trial:  The Meaning of the Shoah for Jewish and Christian Theology Today
Film screening and discussion of film depicting fictional “trial” of God by Auschwitz prisoners
Panel: Rabbi Ari Perl, President of the Rabbinic Association of Greater Dallas, Rabbi of Congregation Shaare Tefilla, Dallas; Professor John Holbert, Lois Craddock, SMU Perkins Professor of Homiletics
SMU Perkins Prothro Great Hall, Theology Quad
6 - 10 p.m.

November 12
Holocaust Survivors:  Stories of Resilience
A panel comprised of Holocaust historians, educators, and survivors, gerontologists, social workers and pastoral care clergy will discuss findings from a study on resilience, forgiveness, and survivorship among older Holocaust survivors.
Presenters: Roberta R. Greene, University of Texas School of Social Work and Harriet L. Cohen, Texas Christian University, Harris College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Department of Social Work

SMU Perkins Prothro Great Hall, Theology Quad
8:30 a.m. - 12:30 pm

November 19
Music Out of the Ashes
Lecture/performance focusing on Victor Ullmann’s “Der Kaiser von Atlantis,” an opera written in the Theresienstadt concentration camp but not performed until the 1970s.  Program  will include scenes from the opera interspersed with commentary about the camp, the music, and the composer.
Performers:  SMU Meadows School of the Arts Professor Virginia Dupuy and Perkins School of Theology Professors Christopher Anderson and John Holbert
SMU Perkins Prothro Great Hall, Theology Quad
6 - 10 p.m.

November 23
Is Art Worth a Life? Hitler, War and the Monuments Men

Interactive presentation with slides and video clips
Presenter:  Robert Edsel, author of Rescuing DaVinci and The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History, co-producer of documentary film Rape of Europa, founding President of the Monuments Men Foundation, an organization dedicated to the recovery and preservation of Nazi-looted art.
SMU Perkins Prothro Great Hall, Theology Quad
6 - 10 p.m.

Co-sponsors for the 2009 Fall Program Series are SMU’s Cary M. Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility, the Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center for Education and Tolerance, SMU Meadows School of the Arts, SMU Perkins School of Theology, TCU’s Harris College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Department of Social Work and the University of Dallas.









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