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Virtual Guest Lecture: Shoshana Ronen (Univ. of Warsaw) on “Post-Holocaust Hebrew and Polish Poetry”

November 9, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

The Mosse/Weinstein Center for Jewish Studies presents a lecture in honor of Rachel Feldhay Brenner z”l

“Post-Holocaust Hebrew and Polish Poetry, and Some Lessons it Holds for the Post-Holocaust World”
Shoshana Ronen (University of Warsaw)

Tuesday, November 9
2:00 pm (U.S. Central Time)
To be held virtually, via Zoom. To RSVP and receive the Zoom information, click here.

In this lecture, Prof. Ronen will discuss two poets whose poetry deals and struggle with the Holocaust and its consequences in the Post-Holocaust world: Hebrew poet Avot Yeshurun and Polish poet Tadeusz Różewicz. Avot Yeshurun (1904-1992) was born in Poland but immigrated to Palestine in 1925. His struggle with the Holocaust comes from deep emotions of sorrow and guilt – sorrow because of the total destruction of his childhood world, and guilt because of the feeling that he abandoned his parents and siblings to their death. In the case of Yeshurun we have the distant perspective of a potential victim who, fortunately, was far from the war, and whose sense of loss and guilt does not give him rest. Tadeusz Różewicz (1921-2014) had a very complex attitude towards his identity and role in the Holocaust. As a person who had hidden Jewish background, his identity is an interesting combination of an outside observer, a Pole, a person who took an active part in the war (as an underground member who fought the Nazis), and a survivor. This complex identity is a crucial element in understanding his poetry, especially his poems that touch on the Holocaust directly. Despite their differing experiences and identities, Różewicz and Yeshurun both had broader perspectives on the Holocaust and take from it significant lessons for our world today.

SHOSHANA RONEN is a professor at the University of Warsaw and the head of the Hebrew Studies Department (2009-2021). She is the author of In Pursuit of the Void: Journeys to Poland in Contemporary Israeli Literature (2001); Nietzsche and Wittgenstein: In Search of Secular Salvation, (2002); Polin – A Land of Forests and Rivers: Images of Poland and Poles in Contemporary Hebrew Literature in Israel (2007), A Prophet of Consolation on the Threshold of Destruction: Yehoshua Ozjasz Thon, an Intellectual Portrait (2015), and the co-editor of Polish and Hebrew Literature and National Identity (2010), A Romantic Polish-Jew: Rabbi Ozjasz Thon from Various Perspectives (2015), and The Trilingual Literature of Polish Jews From Different Perspectives: In Memory of I. L. Peretz (2017). Professor Ronen is interested in modern Hebrew literature, Jewish thought, and modern philosophy. She is particularly interested in the Holocaust in Hebrew literature, Jewish philosophical and theological thinking after Auschwitz, women in Judaism and Hebrew literature, and memory, identity, and nationhood in modern Hebrew literature.


For a downloadable PDF of this poster, click here



November 9, 2021
2:00 pm - 3:30 pm