2024 Jack and Anita Hess Faculty Seminar - Jewish Responses to the Holocaust: Dispossession, Restitution, and Reconstructing the Home
Seminar Dates: January 8–12, 2024
The 2024 Jack and Anita Hess Faculty Seminar will explore the Holocaust through the lens of Jewish experiences of dispossession and looting during World War II, as well as processes of restitution, reparations, and rebuilding of private lives in the postwar period. Drawing on the Museum’s extensive collections, the Seminar will examine the concept of “home” as represented through stolen property, sites of memory, places to return to, and conceptual spaces to be reconstructed anew by diaspora communities. Speakers will discuss the complexities of making restitution claims across different postwar European contexts, including in France, Austria, and Poland. The Seminar will also shed light on how Jewish claims to restitution fit in a global context of transitional justice and reparations claims that have emerged since World War II.
The Seminar is designed to help faculty, instructors, and advanced PhD candidates who are currently teaching or preparing to teach courses that focus on or have a curricular component relating to restitution, reparations, conceptions of home, and the Holocaust. Applications are welcome from instructors across academic disciplines, including but not limited to: Archeology; Anthropology; History; Philosophy; Art; Conservation Studies; Disability Studies; Gender Studies, Women’s Studies; German Studies; History of Material Culture; Holocaust and Genocide Studies; Jewish Studies; Law and Human Rights; Museum Studies; Political Science; Psychology; Sociology; and Theology and Religious Studies. The Seminar aims to deepen, broaden, and enrich how we teach Jewish responses to the Holocaust through a closer examination of restitution claims and the reconstruction of the home in the postwar period.