Letters

Letters Archive
Fall 2002, Vol. 11, No. 1 (requires Adobe Acrobat)

The Holocaust and Other Genocides: History, Representation, Ethics

Vanderbilt University Press has recently published an interdisciplinary curriculum guide for teaching about the Holocaust and other acts of genocide. This volume, The Holocaust and Other Genocides: History, Representation, Ethics, edited by Helmut Walser Smith, associate professor of history at Vanderbilt University, is the product of a collaborative project sponsored by the Warren Center and supported by grants from the Tennessee Holocaust Commission and the Zimmerman Family Foundation. Funding for this project will allow the Holocaust Commission and the Warren Center to provide a copy of the volume to all high school libraries in the state of Tennessee.

The curriculum is the first to systematically tie the teaching of the Holocaust to the analysis of the genocides in Armenia, Bosnia and Kosovo, and Rwanda. The volume consists of five parts: introduction; history of the Holocaust; representations of the Holocaust in literature, film, and the arts; other genocides; and ethics. It models an interdisciplinary approach through the presentation and analysis of primary documents, and provides the reader with detailed introductions for each section that reflect current research in different academic disciplines. It also includes discussion questions, suggestions for further reading, additional
resources, and intratextual links designed to promote interdisciplinary reflection on this controversial topic.

The curriculum was shaped with feedback from those who teach Holocaust studies, including twelve faculty members from five universities across the state, representing eight academic disciplines, and eight secondary school teachers from a variety of academic backgrounds from schools in middle Tennessee. The Warren Center hosted a year-long seminar involving the primary contributors to the volume, and convened a summer workshop with the secondary school teachers the following summer to read and revise the manuscript for use in the classroom. Contributors include William James Booth, professor of political science, Vanderbilt University; Penelope H. Brooks, professor of psychology, emerita, Peabody College at Vanderbilt University; Joel Dark, assistant professor of history, Tennessee State University; Paul B. Fleming, teacher, Hume Fogg High School; Ernest Freudenthal, associate professor of engineering, Vanderbilt University; Jay Geller, senior lecturer of modern Jewish culture, Vanderbilt University; Sue Chaney Gilmore, teacher, Hillsboro High School; Teresa A. Goddu, associate professor of English, Vanderbilt University; Peter Haas, Abba Hillel Silver Professor, Judaic Studies, and director, Samuel Rosenthal Center for Judaic Studies, Case Western Reserve University; David Patterson, Bornblum Chair of Excellence in Judaic Studies and director, Bornblum Judaic Studies Program, University of Memphis; Gary Phillips, professor of religion and chair, Religion Department, University of the South; Margaret Vandiver, assistant professor of criminology and criminal justice, University of Memphis; and Meike G.Werner, assistant professor of German, Vanderbilt University.


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For more information, contact the Center's executive director, Mona C. Frederick.


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