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May 2022

Roman Vishniac. In Focus: 1922-2022 (Day 2)

May 2 @ 9:30 am - 5:30 pm
Zoom, Online

The Magnes Collection, in collaboration with UC Berkeley’s Center for Jewish Studies, presents “Roman Vishniac. In Focus: 1922-2022.” celebrating the reopening of The Magnes and the richness of the Roman Vishniac Archive. This 2-day event combines an Open House (May 1) featuring “A Glimpse of Vishniac,” a digital display of photographs of Jewish life from Eastern and Central Europe from before World War II, as well as a day-long virtual Symposium (May 2) with internationally acclaimed scholars discussing the historical…

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Roman Vishniac. In Focus: 1922-2022 (Day 1)

May 1 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, 2121 Allston Way
Berkeley,
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The Magnes Collection, in collaboration with UC Berkeley’s Center for Jewish Studies, presents “Roman Vishniac. In Focus: 1922-2022.” celebrating the reopening of The Magnes and the richness of the Roman Vishniac Archive. This 2-day event combines an Open House (May 1) featuring “A Glimpse of Vishniac,” a digital display of photographs of Jewish life from Eastern and Central Europe from before World War II, as well as a day-long virtual Symposium (May 2) with internationally acclaimed scholars discussing the historical…

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April 2022

In the Midst of Civilized Europe: The Pogroms of 1918-1921 and the Onset of the Holocaust (Annual Pell Endowed Lecture)

April 25 @ 4:00 pm
3335 Dwinelle Hall

Spring 2022 Pell Lecture. This program is presented with the generous support of the Joseph and Eda Pell Endowed Fund for Jewish Studies, and is a part of the Berkeley Antisemitism Education Initiative. Between 1918 and 1921, over a hundred thousand Jews were murdered in Ukraine by peasants, townsmen, and soldiers who blamed the Jews for the turmoil of the Russian Revolution. In hundreds of separate incidents, ordinary people robbed their Jewish neighbors with impunity, burned down their houses, ripped apart…

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At Home in America? Three Poets on Belonging & Diaspora in an Unsettled Moment

April 21 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, 2121 Allston Way
Berkeley,
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The Center for Jewish Studies, in conjunction with The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life, is pleased to present this in-person poetry panel featuring Dan Alter with Erika Meitner and Daniel Khalastchi, two of the most exciting Jewish poets working in the US, with new books out now or in the spring. Naomi Seidman will moderate a discussion and reading, offering poetry as a lens into how particular sensibilities navigate these issues in a time of uncertainty and possibility. Dan…

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March 2022

Letters from the Abyss: Jewish Travelogues on Jewish Life in Nazi Germany in the Yiddish Press of Warsaw

March 31 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Zoom, Online

Between 1933 and 1939, several dozen journalists writing for the Yiddish press in Poland traveled to Nazi Germany to cover political developments and Jewish life in the Third Reich from an investigative, ethnographic and uniquely Eastern European-Jewish point of view. Their personal and professional experience allowed them to document and interpret National Socialism from a dual perspective. As traveling Jewish journalists from Eastern Europe they were “outsiders” from German society and from the German-Jewish experience. However, as Jews travelling through Nazi Germany (and sometimes staying for weeks or months), they were also “insiders”…

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“Guides who Helped Jews Flee from France to Spain across the Pyrenees: 1940-1944”

March 3 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Zoom, Online

Persecution caused thousands of Jews from Germany and German-occupied countries to seek refuge in France, or to travel through France on their way out of Europe, between 1933 and 1944. After Germany occupied a large part of France in June 1940, both the German administration governing the Occupied Zone and the French Vichy government in the Unoccupied Zone began persecuting Jews. For Jews seeking to leave France, one escape route was across the Pyrenees to Spain and then Portugal, where they…

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February 2022

“Refuseniks & Rights Defenders: Jews & the Soviet Dissident Movement”

February 17 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
3335 Dwinelle Hall

The exodus of Jews from the former Soviet Union transformed the Jewish landscape on three continents and has been called the preeminent case of Jewish human rights activism. It is often identified — and confused — with the Soviet dissident movement and the struggle for rights in Russia. What brought the two movements together — and what kept them apart? This talk explores the ideas, the people, and the politics that animated the most consequential forms of resistance to the…

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“Ottomans After Empire: Sephardi Immigrant Space and Daily Life in Interwar Paris”

February 10 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Zoom, Online

In the first decades of the twentieth century, tens of thousands of Sephardi Jews migrated out of the crumbling Ottoman Empire and its successor states to build new lives in France. Most Ottoman Sephardi immigrants settled in Paris’ 11th arrondissement, which became known in common parlance as “Little Turkey.” With streets lined with Sephardi restaurants and grocers, apartment buildings inhabited by Sephardi immigrant families, and a center marked by the Ottoman Sephardi Temple Popincourt, the Roquette Quarter recast what it…

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January 2022

“Figuring Jerusalem: Politics and Poetics in the Sacred Center”

January 20 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Zoom, Online

The Hebrew imagination, incubated in ancient Zion, travelled with the Jews throughout their diasporas, generating rich mimetic cultures meant as temporary waystations along the path to eventual return and redemption. While Jerusalem and the site of the ruined Temple remained the focus of liturgical attention, distance, deferral and substitution liberated the poetic imagination. But, from the “beginning,” the question of the locus of holiness remained unresolved—in the Hebrew Bible itself, and even after Solomon completed building a “house to the…

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November 2021

“Quarantine in the Prague Ghetto: Jews, Christians, and Epidemic Disease in an Early Modern City”

November 4, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Zoom, Online
Joshua Teplitsky photo

Joshua Teplitsky, Stony Brook University. In 1713, plague ravaged the city of Prague. It struck Christians and Jews alike, but contemporary observers singled out the Jewish quarter of the city as a hotspot of contagion, and authorities acted to segregate and separate the Jews of the city from Christians. Jews actively crafted responses both to plague and policy, marshaling health resources, funds, and a deep cultural reservoir shaped by past traditions and in confrontation with new circumstances. This lecture explores…

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