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Holocaust Experts to Share Their Findings at Scholars’ Conference
Feb. 22, 2018
The UT Dallas Ackerman Center for Holocaust Studies will welcome some of the world’s foremost Holocaust scholars, theologians and survivors for the 48th Annual Scholars’ Conference on the Holocaust and the Churches on March 3-5.
Dr. Nils Roemer
The collection of experts will share their findings in hopes that the lessons of the Holocaust will remain relevant. Dr. Nils Roemer, director of the Ackerman Center, said the conference focuses on being interfaith, interdisciplinary and international.
“It will be an open environment in which scholars and PhD students join in a conversation and create a community of like-minded individuals who pursue similar things,” said Roemer, the Stan and Barbara Rabin Professor in Holocaust Studies. “We also are bringing together people of various backgrounds to discuss the Holocaust from historical, philosophical and theological perspectives.”
Franklin H. Littell and Hubert G. Locke founded the conference in 1970. Various universities have held it over the years. Under an agreement signed last fall, the Ackerman Center will lead and host the event on a continuing basis.
This year’s conference will feature three tracks: The Holocaust: History and Pedagogy; Faith, Memory, and Responsibility; and Philosophy and Aesthetics. Roemer said the conference will include discussions about responsibility for the Holocaust.
The 48th Annual Scholars’ Conference on the Holocaust and the Churches will begin at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, March 3, and continue through Monday, March 5.
Registration and more information are available on the conference website.
“Where does the responsibility lie? This creates all sorts of lines of investigation that are relevant to ask today,” he said. “Where do we have to voice our opinions? Where are we quietly complicit? When do we have to overtly oppose immoral actions?”
The keynote speaker on Sunday, March 4, will be Dr. Irene Hasenberg Butter, a well-known peace activist and Holocaust survivor. Butter, professor emerita of public health at the University of Michigan, is a frequent inspirational speaker who shares her experience during World War II and stresses the importance of never being a bystander and that one person can make a difference.
Roemer said UT Dallas was chosen to host the conference because it is a young and dynamic university located in a diverse part of Dallas-Fort Worth, and because of the Ackerman Center’s success.
“We’re taking something that has existed somewhere else and we’re now placing it into a new context,” he said. “If we do a good job, it will create new connections and new synergies.”
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