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Cultural Center

Issues in Judaism Lecture Series

Fall 2017

The Book Smugglers

Monday, October 30, 7 p.m.

Historian David Fishman recounts one of the most amazing chapters of spiritual resistance in the Holocaust. A group of ghetto inmates risked their lives day in and day out for more than a year, to rescue thousands of rare Jewish books, manuscripts and documents from looting and destruction by the Germans. After World War II, the survivors dug up the cultural treasures hidden in bunkers and other places and smuggled many of them to America and Israel. Fishman has documented this remarkable event based on Jewish, German and Soviet sources in his new book, The Book Smugglers: Partisans, Poets, and the Race to Save Jewish Treasures from the Nazis.

Speaker:

  • Dr. David E. Fishman
    Professor of Jewish History
    Director, Project Judaica
    The Jewish Theological Seminary of America
    Author: Russia’s First Modern Jews: The Jews of Shklov and The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture

Wednesday, November 8, 7 p.m. How to Research and Document Your Family History:

Nolan Altman

A Tale of Two Families

The vast majority of our Jewish ancestors came to the United States during one of two great migrations: German Jews during the period 1820-1880 and a larger migration of Eastern European Jews between 1880 and the early 1920s. Starting with information that you know about yourself and your immediate family, our goal is to discover our ancestors’ history both from the time our family came to the United States and back in the “old country.” Nolan Altman will discuss resources available to assist in trying to find information on family members who did not come to America or information that may have been lost during the Holocaust. Topics to be discussed include naming practices, vital records, passenger manifest records, Holocaust resources, and genealogy and your computer.

Speaker:

  • Nolan Altman
    Past President, Jewish Genealogical Society of Long Island (JGSLI)
    Vice President, JewishGen’s Holocaust Database
    Adjunct Professor, Queensborough Community College, CUNY

Location for all lectures: Guthart Cultural Center Theater, Axinn Library

Funding for these lectures has been provided in, part,  by the Dorothy and Elmer Kirsch Endowment Fund for the Hofstra Cultural Center.

For more information, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669.

RSVP Here


Monday, October 9, 2:55-4:20 p.m.

GLOBAL JUDAISMS LECTURE III

Between Israel and Argentina: Youth, Gender and Politics

Dr. Adriana Brodsky, president of the Latin American Jewish Studies Association and associate professor of history at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, explores the paths taken by young Argentine Jewish women and men as they navigate these politically charged times. Youths who were active in Jewish communal institutions debated whether to participate in Argentine political youth groups. Most of them were training to eventually move to Israel, and many of these young Jews chose not to be apathetic to an existing political climate that increasingly viewed young people as agents of change.

Guthart Cultural Center Theater, Axinn Library

Presented in collaboration with Hofstra’s Department of Religion, Department of History, Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program, Women’s Studies Program, LGBT+ Studies Program, African Studies Program, and the Center for the Study of “Race,” Culture and Social Justice.


  • Spring 2017

    Spring 2017


    Wednesday, March 29, 7 p.m.
    According to the Customs of Moses and Shinto

    The mystery of the Lost Tribes of Israel, exiled by the Assyrians in the 8th century B.C., and their whereabouts, dates back centuries, and still remains a mystery today. A significant group of people in Japan claim to be the descendants of the Israelites. Certain rituals are performed in Shinto shrines that resemble Jewish traditions, and there are other similar customs, ideological principles and structures. Research by Israeli rabbis and discoveries by Japanese scientists indicate that this theory might be true. We will follow the eastward route in which the exiled tribes were taken in the 8th century B.C. and again in 586 B.C., heightening the probability of them ending up in Japan. The lecture will be accompanied by ancient drawings, scripts, sketches and photos.

    Speaker: Michael Tuchfeld
    Political analyst and columnist, Makor Rishon Magazine
    Host of Radio Galey Israel
    Host of Israel Radio, IBA and Channel 2 News, The Knesset Channel in Jerusalem, Israel
    and former parlimentary correspondent

    Shinto rabbi



    Wednesday, April 26, 7 p.m.
    Exploring Cuba: Its Once and Future Jews

    Three visits by Andrée Brooks to Cuba in recent years, plus additional research that has been built upon her scholarly research concerning the Conversos of Central and South America, find a community in flux. (Conversos were Jews who had been forcibly converted to Catholicism late in 15th century Spain, but often kept their Jewish heritage alive in secret.) Later migrations brought Jews from the Ottoman Empire and Eastern Europe. In recent months, the relaxation of restrictions, both by the Americans and the Cubans themselves, has resulted in more and more of Cuba's Jews, and descendants of Jews, coming forward to reclaim their Jewish heritage and receive delegations from Jewish groups from the United States. This lecture explores the challenges and opportunities these changes are now raising, including some historical background that focuses on the earliest Converso/Jewish arrivals from Spain — and how and why they went there.

    Speaker: Andrée Aelion Brooks
    Associate Fellow, Yale University
    Former contributing columnist, The New York Times
    Author, The Woman Who Defied Kings: The Life and Times of Doña Gracia Nasi (A Jewish Leader During the Renaissance)
    Journalst and lecturer, Westport, CT

    Location for all lectures: Guthart Cultural Center Theater, Axinn Library

    Funding for these lectures has been provided by the Dorothy and Elmer Kirsch Endowment Fund for the Hofstra Cultural Center.

    Tickets:
    $8 general public
    $7 senior citizen (over 65 with ID) or matriculated non-Hofstra student

    Two free tickets with current faculty/staff/student HofstraCard (must present HofstraCard at Box Office)

    For tickets for these events, please contact the John Cranford Adams Playhouse Box Office at 516-463-6644, Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-3:45 p.m.

    For more information, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669.

    Patronato synagogue in Cuba

    GLOBAL JUDAISM LECTURE

    Networks of Jewish Diaspora: Sephardic Worlds

    Join us for this lecture delivered by two experts in the field who explore the networks of Sephardim of Arab-Jews through the Atlantic and Mediterranean. The speakers unveil hidden stories of intercultural encounters, struggles for identity, and religious creativity.

    Speakers:
    Ronnie Perelis, Rabbi Alcalay Chair in Sephardic Studies, Yeshiva University
    Francesca Bregoli, Acting Director, Center for Jewish Studies, The Graduate Center, CUNY

    Presented by the Hofstra Cultural Center and Jewish Studies Program in collaboration with the Hofstra Department of Religion and Hofstra Hillel: The Center for Jewish Life on Campus.

    Guthart Cultural Center Theater, Axinn Library

  • Fall 2016

    Fall 2016

    THE GHETTOS OF EUROPE

    Thursday, October 27, 7 p.m.
    500 Years of the Ghetto of Venice

    The ghetto of Venice was established in 1516 and existed until opened by the forces of Napoleon Bonaparte in 1797. In defiance of its supposedly closed status, the Venetian ghetto was an important locus of learning, commerce and culture, not just for the Jews but for the larger Italian and European society as well. Typical of the paradoxical nature of the ghetto in Venice (and Italy in general), the Ghetto Nuovo (new ghetto) is older than the Ghetto Vecchio (old ghetto). Join us as we untangle these contradictions.

    Speaker: Stanislao G. Pugliese PhD
    Professor of History, Queensboro UNICO Distinguished Professor of Italian and Italian-American Studies, Hofstra University

    Venice Ghetto

    Thursday, December 1, 8 p.m.
    Life and Death in the Ghettos of Eastern Europe

    By discussing the different responses to persecution and annihilation by the Jews of Eastern Europe during the Holocaust, this talk explores questions of life and death in two of the largest ghettos established by the Germans in Poland and the Soviet Union, namely Warsaw and Minsk. The talk examines, in particular, instances of spiritual and armed resistance in the two ghettos.

    Speaker: Elissa Bemporad, PhD
    Jerry and William Ungar Chair in Eastern European Jewish History and the Holocaust
    Associate Professor of History at Queens College/CUNY
    NEH Senior Fellow at the Center for Jewish History 2015-16
    Fellow, Mandel Center for Advanced Studies at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D.C.
    Author, Becoming Soviet Jews: The Bolshevik Experiment in Minsk

    Tickets:
    $8 general public
    $7 senior citizen (over 65 with ID) or matriculated non-Hofstra student
    Two free tickets with current faculty/staff/student HofstraCard (must present HofstraCard at Box Office)

    For tickets for these events, please contact the John Cranford Adams Playhouse Box Office at 516-463-6644, Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-3:45 p.m.

    For more information, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669.

    Elissa Bemporad

    Monday, November 14, 7 p.m.
    Jennifer Teege
    My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me:
    A Black Woman Discovers Her Family’s Nazi Past

    My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me is a book born of a shocking discovery for speaker Jennifer Teege. She picked up a book by chance at Hamburg's main library and discovered that her grandfather was the brutal Nazi commandant of the Plaszow concentration camp, portrayed so memorably by Ralph Fiennes in the film Schindler's List. Ms. Teege's mother was German; her father was Nigerian. Raised in a loving home by her adopted German family, Ms. Teege struggled with depression as she coped with the trauma of rejection by her birth mother. She went to college in Israel, where she learned fluent Hebrew and earned degrees in Middle Eastern and African Studies. She later returned to Germany and now had to learn about her biological family's secret from a book; and that a monstrous man, Amon Goeth, reviled for decades as "the butcher of Plaszow," was her biological grandfather. After her emotional pilgrimage, Ms. Teege says, "I'm no longer a prisoner of the past. I know now that I am not to blame, and the guilt no longer weighs heavily on my shoulders. There is no Nazi gene: We can decide for ourselves who and what we want to be."

    Admission: Free

    Location for all lectures: Guthart Cultural Center Theater, Axinn Library

    Jennifer Teege

    Funding for these lectures has been provided by the Dorothy and Elmer Kirsch Endowment Fund for the Hofstra Cultural Center.
    For more information on these events, please the Hofstra Cultural Center, Monday-Friday at 516-463-5669.

  • Spring 2016

    Spring 2016

    New Perspectives on the Holocaust:
    Roman Gold, The Vatican and Soviet Women

    Monday, March 21, 7 p.m.
    Oro Macht Frei (Gold Will Set You Free)

    Oro Macht FreiThis film tells the story of a Roman Jewish community that, two and a half weeks into the German occupation of Rome, was ordered by SS Colonel Herbert Kappler to produce 50 kilos of gold within 36 hours, or he would deport 200 Jewish heads of family. Over a feverish day and a half, this already poor, working class community managed to come up with the 50 kilos of gold in order to save one another. Oro Macht Frei reveals the sad delusion of a community that – believing they had paid their ransom and would be left alone – did not go into hiding.

    Speaker: Catherine Campbell, Writer and Producer


    Stanislao G. PuglieseMonday, April 18, 7 p.m.
    The Vatican and the Holocaust


    A spate of new books and scholarship has re-opened the debate on the role of Pope Pius XII and the Vatican as the Holocaust unfolded in Italy. This lecture examines the historical context of anti-Semitism in Italy, the rise of fascism, internment camps, the anti-fascist Jewish Resistance and the Holocaust in the shadow of the Vatican.

    Speaker: Stanislao G. Pugliese, PhD, Professor of History, Hofstra University


    Elissa BemporadTuesday, May 3, 7 p.m.
    Through the Eyes of Soviet Women:
    The Holocaust in the Soviet Union


    Speaker: Elissa Bemporad, Jerry and William Ungar Chair in East European Jewish History and the Holocaust Associate Professor of History at Queens College of the City University of New York/CUNY; NEH Senior Fellow at the Center for Jewish History; Author, Becoming Soviet Jews: The Bolshevik Experiment in Minsk.

    Funding for these lectures has been provided by the Dorothy and Elmer Kirsch Endowment Fund for the Hofstra Cultural Center.

    Location for all lectures: Guthart Cultural Center Theater, Axinn Library

    Tickets:
    $8 general public
    $7 senior citizen (over 65 with ID) or matriculated non-Hofstra student
    Two free tickets with current faculty/staff/student HofstraCard (must present HofstraCard at Box Office)

    For tickets for these events, please contact the John Cranford Adams Playhouse Box Office at 516-463-6644, Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-3:45 p.m.

    For more information, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669.


    Hofstra Hillel

    and the
    Hofstra Cultural Center
    present

    Monday, April 4
    FROM THE ASHES: THE REBIRTH OF POLISH JEWRY
    CONFERENCE

    For centuries Poland represented a vibrant center of Jewish life. This world was destroyed by the Holocaust. Today, Polish Jewry is experiencing an unexpected revival thanks to the work of dedicated members of young pluralistic Jewish communities, as well as non-Jewish allies and the support of the Polish government. There is a major shift occurring in how we understand the history of Polish Jewry. Instead of focusing solely on the destruction, today’s students will understand the full history of this important community. Symposium participants have the opportunity to hear from individuals, educators and scholars working in Poland to overcome all the odds and re-establish Jewish life. The discussions and lectures will be designed to engage participants on different educational levels.

    Tuesday, April 12, 8 p.m.
    Hofstra Hillel Community Education Series

    Thursday, April 21, 7 p.m.
    Hofstra Hillel Chai Notes
    Spring Concert

    For more information, and to register, please contact Hofstra Hillel at 516-463-6922 or visit Polish Conference Registration.

  • Fall 2015

    Fall 2015

    Sunday, October 25, 11:30 a.m.
    Lecture and Brunch with Author Alisa Solomon

    Fiddler on the Roof

    Alisa Solomon, author of Wonder of Wonders: A Cultural History of Fiddler on the Roof, traces how and why the story of Tevye the milkman — the creation of the great Yiddish writer Sholem Aleichem — was reborn as a blockbuster musical and a cultural touchstone. She discusses how the songs have been incorporated into sacred ceremonies and hip-hop hits and how the story has inspired religious conversion and secular satire. It has been lauded as one of the most finely wrought works for the Broadway stage and treated as an authentic historical document. Since its blockbuster debut in 1964, Fiddler on the Roof has been seized for an astonishing range of cultural purposes. 

    Lowenfeld Conference and Exhibition Hall, 10th Floor Axinn Library, South Campus
    Ticket Prices:

    $22 General Public
    $20 Senior Citizen (Over 65)
    $12 Faculty/staff/student with current HofstraCard

    Advance reservations required.
    For more information and to purchase tickets, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669. Tickets for performances of Fiddler on the Roof are sold separately.

    Lecture and Brunch with Author Alisa Solomon

    Sunday, October 25, 2 p.m.
    Performance: Fiddler on the Roof
    book by Joseph Stein
    music by Jerry Bock and lyrics by Sheldon Harnick
    directed by Cindy Rosenthal

    John Cranford Adams Playhouse
    Admission: Fee
    For tickets, please call the John Cranford Adams Playhouse
    Box Office at
    516-463-6644, Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-3:45 p.m.


    Tuesday, December 1, 4:30 p.m.
    From Cabaret to the Camps:
    One Woman's Journey into the Music of the Holocaust
    Speaker: Lynn Torgove

    Singer, director and cantor Lynn Torgove opens doors to a deeper understanding of the world of Holocaust music in her presentation, which draws on women's experiences at the Ravensbrück Concentration Camp. Torgove presents her research on seven women musicians in the camp and performs selections from an original cabaret program she conceived and directed in 2010-11, which was based on these women's lives.

    Guthart Cultural Center Theater, Axinn Library
    Ticket Prices:

    $8 General Public
    $7 Senior Citizen (over 65)
    Two free tickets with current faculty/staff/student with current HofstraCard

    Funding for both lectures has been provided by the Dorothy and Elmer Kirsch Endowment Fund for the Hofstra Cultural Center

    For more information and to purchase tickets, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669.

    One Woman's Journey into the Music of the Holocaust
    FOR MORE INFORMATION

    For more information please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at (516) 463-5669.

    LECTURE SERIES DIRECTOR

    Natalie Datlof
    Director Emerita
    Hofstra Cultural Center

    Printable PDF and Registration Form »
  • 2014/2015 Academic Year

    SPRING 2015
    Issues in Judaism Lecture Series

     

    For more information on Spring 2015 lectures, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669.

    Issues in Judaism Lectures

    HOFSTRA CULTURAL CENTER
    and
    HOFSTRA HILLEL:
    THE CENTER FOR JEWISH LIFE ON CAMPUS
    present
    ISSUES IN JUDAISM LECTURE SERIES

    Fall 2014

    Issues in Judaism Lecture Series
    The Unknown Jewish Experience in the Far East

    Speaker: Rabbi Marvin Tokayer is a renowned scholar and lecturer on the remote Jewish communities of the world. He served for many years as the only English-speaking, university trained Rabbi in the Far East, officiating at Jewish communities from India to Japan.

    He is the author of over 20 books, in Japanese, on Judaica and Japan including the well received The Fugu Plan, the untold story of the Japanese and the Jews during World War II, which became an award – winning PBS documentary on Sugihara (Japan's unsung Schindler), describing the heroic escape of European Jews to Japan and China during the Holocaust.

    His most recent book, Pepper, Silk & Ivory, containing amazing stories about Jews and the Far East, was published recently and will be a featured PBS documentary.

    From the Occupation of Japan to the Raj in India:
    Jewish Influences in the Orient

    Date: Thursday, October 23

    The Far Edge of the Diaspora: Burma, Mongolia, Singapore and Manchuria

    Date: Thursday, October 30
    Location for both Lectures:
    Leo A. Guthart Cultural Center Theater
    Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library, First Floor, South Campus

    Tickets:
    $8 general public
    $7 senior citizen (over 65 with ID) or PIER member
    $5 Matriculated non-Hofstra student
    Student under 18 receives one free ticket.
    Two free tickets with current faculty/staff/student HofstraCard (must present HofstraCard at Box Office)
    On Sale beginning September 24.

    Supported in part by the Dorothy and Elmer Kirsch Endowment for the Hofstra Cultural Center.

    For tickets for these events, please contact the John Cranford Adams Playhouse Box
    Office at 516-463-6644, Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-3:45 p.m.

    For more information, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669.

  • 2013/2014 Academic Year

    Spring 2014

    The Jewish Diaspora in the Far East--POSTPONED

    Please note: The Jewish Diaspora in the Far East on April 3 and April 7, which were scheduled to take place in the Cultural Center Theater have been postponed til the fall semester due to scheduling conflicts.

    Renowned lecturer on the remote Jewish communities of the world, Rabbi Marvin Tokayer, will discuss the The Jewish Diaspora in the Far East. He is author of The Fugu Plan and 40 other books. Historical consultant for the award-winning PBS documentary, Sugihara: Conspiracy of Kindness (about Japan’s “unsung Schindler”).

    Issues in Judaism Lecture Series is presented by the Hofstra Cultural Center and Hofstra Hillel: The Center for Jewish Life on Campus.

    Dates: Thursday, April 3, 2014 and Monday, April 7, 2014


    Middle East Update With Michael Tuchfeld--CANCELLED

    Please note: this event, Middle East Update with Michael Tuchfeld has been canceled due to scheduling conflicts.
    Political Analyst and Columnist, Michael Tuchfeld, will share his insights on the Middle East. He is a columnist for Makor Rishon magazine, and host for Radio Galey Israel. He is former Parliamentary Correspondent and News Editor at TV2, The Knesset Channel and IBA (Israel Broadcasting Authority).

    Issues in Judaism Lecture Series is presented by the Hofstra Cultural Center and Hofstra Hillel:
    The Center for Jewish Life on Campus.

    Dates: Tuesday, April 29, 2014

    For more information, please contact the Hofstra Cultural Center at 516-463-5669 or visit hofstra.edu/culture.


    Fall 2013

    From Ancient Babylon to America:
    The History and Culture of Iranian Jews
    Speaker:    Houman Sarshar
    Member, University Seminar Series, Columbia University
    Director of Publications, Center for Iranian Jewish Oral History
    Editor, The History of Contemporary Iranian Jews, Vols. 2-4, 1997-2000;
    Esther’s Children: A Portrait of Iranian Jews, 2002;
    Jewish Communities of Iran: Entries on Judeo-Persian Communities
    Published by the Encyclopædia Iranica, 2011
    Thursday, October 17, 7 p.m.
    The Jews of Iran Throughout the Ages
    Thursday, November 14, 7 p.m.
    The Role of Iranian Jews in the Preservation, Proliferation, and
    Development of Persian Music

    Location for both Lectures:
    Leo A. Guthart Cultural Center Theater
    Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library, First Floor, South Campus
    Supported in part by the Dorothy and Elmer Kirsch Endowment for the Hofstra Cultural Center.

    Tickets: On sale beginning September 17.
    $8 (for each lecture)
    $7 senior citizen (over 65)
    Two free tickets (for each lecture) with current
    faculty/staff/student HofstraCard (must present HofstraCard at Box Office)


    Sunday, October 27, 7 p.m.
    Klezmer Concert:
    Yale Strom and Hot Pstromi: Hot and Spicy (Hays un Scharf)!
    Yale Strom, violin; Elizabeth Schwartz, vocals; David Licht, percussion;
    Sprocket, bass; Lou Fanucchi and Peter Stan, accordion; Norbert Stachel, reeds
    Location:
    The Helene Fortunoff Theater
    Monroe Lecture Center
    California Avenue, South Campus
    Tickets: On Sale beginning September 24.
    $10 general public
    $8 senior citizen (over 65 with ID)
    Student under 18 receives one free ticket.
    Two free tickets with current faculty/staff/student HofstraCard (must present HofstraCard at Box Office)
    Tickets are on sale For tickets for these events, please contact the John Cranford Adams Playhouse Box
    Office at 516-463-6644, Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-3:45 p.m.