Review of Center Advisory Board Member Prof. Elissa Bemporad’s Recent and Very Relevant Book

“The war in Ukraine has simultaneously forced to the surface and upended the memory of a history that had fallen into oblivion. The past, we see once more, can be reinvented and reinterpreted. . . . Three recent books excavate this century-old story and shine light on its lasting importance. Elissa Bemporad’s Legacy of Blood: Jews, Pogroms, and Ritual Murder in the Lands of the Soviets looks at the memory and consequences of this violence in the Soviet Union. . . . read more.

Center Director Debórah Dwork Honored with Annetje Felt-Kupferschmidt Award

Jacques Grishaver, Debórah Dwork,, and Marianne de Roos-Norden

Center Director Debórah Dwork was honored to receive the Annetje Fels-Kupferschmidt (AFK) Award, in Amsterdam on 3 May 2022.   Bestowed by the Dutch Auschwitz Committee in recognition of her “pioneering work on and in the field of Holocaust Studies” which “has shaped new generations of scholars, teachers, activists, museum curators, and policy-makers,” the AFK Award is granted annually. Dwork, the 18th recipient, was celebrated for “combining erudition with a strong moral fiber, and advancing research, remembrance, advocacy, and public education on the Holocaust and Genocide Studies for decades and generations to come.” Most particularly, Dwork was lauded “for envisioning and then forging a fundamental road that did not exist — and now does — because of you.”

The Center Condemns Russia’s Genocidal Rhetoric, Genocidal Intentions, and Genocidal Acts

The Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity at the Graduate Center—CUNY condemns the massacres of civilians carried out by Russian troops in the occupied territories of Ukraine since the start of Russia’s invasion. Abundant evidence proves that the massacres are not isolated and exceptional phenomena: together with indiscriminate destruction of civilian infrastructure, looting, and deportations, these massacres are the result of a strategic campaign to eliminate Ukraine’s existence. Statements by public figures and analysts broadcast by Russian state-run media outlets explicitly advocate for de-ukrainization, and for the elimination of the Ukrainian people, thus openly espousing genocidal rhetoric and promoting genocidal intention. We urge the international community to respond to this escalation from war crimes to genocide by increasing humanitarian and military aid to Ukraine and enforcing an embargo on Russian oil and gas. 

Debórah Dwork, Center Director

Center Advisory Board:

Elissa Bemporad, Ungar Chair in East European Jewish History and the Holocaust, Professor, Department of History, Queens College, and Graduate Center-CUNY

Francesca Bregoli, Joseph and Oro Halegua Chair in Greek and Sephardic Jewish Studies, Associate Professor, Department of History, Queens College, and Graduate Center-CUNY

Benjamin Carter Hett, Professor, Department of History, Hunter College and Graduate Center-CUNY

Eli Karetny, Deputy Director, Ralph Bunche Institute 

Steven P. Remy, Professor, Department of History, Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center-CUNY 

Victoria Sanford, Professor of Anthropology, Lehman College; Founding Director, Center for Human Rights & Peace Studies; Doctoral Faculty, Department of Anthropology, Graduate Center-CUNY

John Torpey, Presidential Professor of Sociology and History, Director of the Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies, Graduate Center-CUNY

Statement on Ukraine

The Center Advisory Board condemns Russia’s military assault on Ukraine and President Putin’s use of historical distortions and cynical lies to justify Russia’s attack on Ukrainian sovereignty. We stand with all the people of Ukraine and Russia who oppose this war.

 We call on leaders and citizens around the world to bring this war to an end, and to help those affected by it, first and foremost the people of Ukraine, whose lives and hopes for democratic self-governance have been upended by this vicious assault.

New work by Center Advisory Board Member Professor Victoria Sanford

Center Advisory Board member Prof Victoria Sanford plumbs the texture of terror in her newly published piece, “We’ve Come for the Garbage.” Drawing on her extensive field research on the Guatemalan criminal justice system and its role in the maintenance of inequality, patriarchy, power, and impunity, Prof Sanford explores what it means to confront impunity and support human rights while living on the uncertain and hazy frontiers of life and death in 21st century Guatemala.