Concentration camps existed before World War II and still exist, as Andrea Pitzer will explore in her Oct. 17 lecture, “Harbingers and Echoes of the Shoah.” Pitzer is a journalist and author of “One Long Night: A Global History of Concentration Camps.” The talk, at 4:30pm in Lewis Auditorium in Goldwin Smith Hall, is free and open to the public.
“Even as the world tried to reckon with the singular nature of the Shoah,” says Pitzer, “other camps persisted in its wake.”
Pitzer’s lecture will explore the concentration camp phenomenon and its consequences on the world since the term emerged in the 1890s. As Pitzer notes, during World War I, internment normalized the concept and laid the foundation for the extermination that would happen in the following years. She will reflect on the time and events that ultimately led to the Shoah and discuss the impact it has left on the world today.
“How to respect the specificity of events such as the Nazi genocide of the Jews while also addressing historical comparisons has concerned scholars for decades. Andrea Pitzer's talk will help provide needed context for that still-urgent task,” says Jonathan Boyarin, Director of Jewish Studies.
Pitzer has also written “The Secret History of Vladimir Nabokov,”; her work has been published in Vox, Slate, USA Today, Longreads, Lapham’s Quarterly and McSweeny’s. She completed her undergraduate degree at Georgetown University and studied at MIT and Harvard as an affiliate of the Nieman Foundation for Journalism.
Copies of “One Long Night: A Global History of Concentration Camps” will be available for purchase before and after Pitzer’s lecture.
The lecture is sponsored by the Cornell Jewish Studies Program with support from the Judith Reppy Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies, Society for the Humanities, Institute for German Cultural Studies, and Department of History.
Anna Carmichael ‘18 is a Communications Assistant for the College of Arts Sciences.