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In 2014, the Ghetto Museum at the Terezin Memorial showcased 42 of Mark Podwal’s paintings and drawings, each a disturbing reminder of how Europe’s extensive history of “Jew-hatred” laid the groundwork for the Holocaust. Listen to this discussion with Mark Podwal on his art and explorations. Find out why he chose to focus on Terezin.

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About the Coauthors

Rabbi Marvin Tokayer was first a US Air Force chaplain and then became rabbi of the Jewish Community of Japan. He has written 20 books of Judaica in Japanese, multiple articles for the Encyclopedia Judaica, and, as coauthor, The Fugu Plan: The Untold Story of the Japanese and the Jews during World War II.

 

Dr. Ellen Rodman is a writer, producer, and president of LN Productions LLC, a production and media consulting company based in New York. Prior to founding her own company, Dr.

By Dr. Vivian Mann | Director of the Master's Program in Jewish Art and Visual Culture

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Panel with the Angel Appearing to Zacharias (from a Retable depicting Saint John the Baptist and scenes from his life)
Domingo Ram (Spanish, Aragon, active 1464–1507)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Cloisters Collection, 1925. www.metmuseum.org.

We often think of Jewish life in Spain in terms of the massacres of 1391 and the Spanish Expulsion in 1492. But the art made for the Church between those two dates presents a more nuanced view of Christian–Jewish relations.

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A Discussion with
Editor Menachem Z. Rosensaft
General Counsel of the World Jewish Congress and founding chairman of the International Network of Children of Jewish Holocaust Survivors. He teaches about the law of genocide at the law schools of Columbia and Cornell Universities.


Dr. David Kraemer, Joseph J. and Dora Abbell Librarian and professor of Talmud and Rabbinics, JTS, served as moderator.

 

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(Caption: The building of the Tabernacle in the desert for the Levites’ service.)

Petrus Cunaeus, Republyk der Hebreen (Amsterdam, 1700), Vol. 2, p. 474
RBR DS 116 C915 1700 v.2

The Hebrew Republic (De Republica Hebraeorum in the original Latin) was written in the aftermath of Dutch independence from Spain.

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The Hebrew Bible in which this engraved frontispiece is found was printed in Venice in 1739 at the request of a physician named Isaac Foa. In addition to the Hebrew text, it contains Italian explanations of difficult passages. The engraver, Francesco Griselini (1717–1787), illustrated many non-Jewish works as well as notable borders for megillot, and later became known for his scholarly writing on natural history.

This is the most elaborate of the four frontispieces in this Bible, with images from the story of the Akedah (Binding of Isaac) in this week’s parashah.

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Dr. Vera Basch Moreen’s Catalog of Judeo-Persian Manuscripts in The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary of America (Brill, 2015) serves as an essential reference work for scholars in the fields of Judaica and Iranica about the range of subjects—such as history, poetry, medicine, and philology—that engaged Iranian Jews between the 15th and 19th centuries, and the extent to which an understanding of classical Jewish texts was enmeshed in the literary and artistic sensibilities of the Iranian environment.

The exhibition Judeo-Persian Manuscripts in the JTS Library Collection, curated by

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ABOUT THE PROGRAM

Dr. Johanna Spector (1915–2008), who taught Ethnomusicology at JTS, was a Holocaust survivor who documented Jewish music from around the world. This special Holocaust Memorial Day commemoration will highlight her life and work, as well as The JTS Library's Johanna Spector Archives and Holocaust-related materials.

Etta Abramson (GS '14, DS '14) will perform songs from Dr. Spector's Ghetto-und KZ-Lieder aus Lettland und Litauen (Ghetto and Concentration-Camp Songs from Latvia and Lithuania), and read excerpts from Dr. Spector's diaries.

By Dr. Alan Mintz | Chana Kekst Professor of Hebrew Literature in the Department of Jewish Literature

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The Torah is replete with lists of every kind: the generations before and after Noah, the enumeration of the tribes and their chieftains in the desert, the catalogs of forbidden foods, the inventories of priestly garments. The book of Numbers, which begins with a census, is especially true to its name.

By Rabbi Samuel Barth | Senior Lecturer in Liturgy and Worship

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Several decades ago, many ceremonies commemorating the Shoah attempted to tell the entirety of the story, with numbers that defied comprehension and broad-sweeping trends of history that submerged the experience of individuals in the story of a world run amok. In more recent years, I have observed that the experience and testimonies of individuals have become more prominent, perhaps serving as holographic slivers that represent the wider context. As survivors of the Holocaust are fewer in number each year, we turn to the writings, art, songs, and recordings born out of those years.

As we look

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