Catholic Studies, Bennett Center launch Fall Seasons

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Catholic Studies, Bennett Center launch Fall Seasons

Fairfield University’s fall season of lectures has gotten underway with a roster of engaging speakers sharing their insights on riveting topics.  Below are several events that promise to be memorable. Free and open to the public, the talks will take place in the Dolan School of Business Dining Room:

When people think about Jewish children during the Holocaust, the image of an emaciated and listless child might come to mind. But that image couldn’t be farther from the truth, according to author Debórah Dwork. On Monday‌, October 6, at 7:30 p.m., Dr. Dwork, a noted historian, will share her illuminating research on the subject in a talk entitled “Creativity in the Midst of Catastrophe: Jewish Youth in Nazi Europe.”

Dr. Dwork is the Rose Professor of Holocaust History and founding director of the Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Clark University. "We almost see [Jewish children] through the Germans' eyes as passive and trapped,” she said of her upcoming lecture. “They may have been trapped, but they certainly were not passive!  At no point were Jewish children sitting around, waiting for whatever fate the Germans had in store for them.  On the contrary, they were thinking and doing, dreaming and active.  In my talk, I will explore those daily life activities from the children's perspective.”

The event is sponsored by Fairfield University's Carl and Dorothy Bennett Center for Judaic Studies . The lecture is part of Dr. Dwork’s two-day campus visit as the 2014 Judaic Studies Scholar-in-Residence, an annual program sponsored through the generosity of Edith and David Chaifetz.

On Tuesday, October 7, 2014, at 8 p.m., New York Times best-selling author Mary Karr will discuss how to use Ignatian spirituality in prayer and meditation to discern which paths to follow in writing. Karr is the author of Lit , the sequel to her other critically-acclaimed best-selling memoirs The Liars’ Club and Cherry .

Karr’s talk - “Imagination and Passion in Christian Spirituality: Lessons for Writers from the Ignatian Exercises” - is the 2014 Catholicism and the Arts Lecture.

Her next book is The ABC of Memoir (Fall 2014), a master class on the fastest-growing literary genre. A born raconteur, Karr brings to her lectures and talks the same wit, irreverence, joy, and sorrow found in her poetry and prose. She has been the keynote speaker about her alcoholism and recovery to both the medical profession and the recovery community, and has spoken extensively about her unlikely conversion to Catholicism. Karr welcomes conversation with her audience and she is known for her spirited, lively, and engaging Q&A sessions.

Karr was a guest faculty member of Fairfield University’s M.F.A. in Creative Writing Program .

The lecture is sponsored by Fairfield University’s Center for Catholic Studies .

On Tuesday, October 21, at 7:30 p.m., the Bennett Center will present the talk: “Yentl: From Yeshiva Boy to Syndrome,” by Dr. Pamela S. Nadell, Patrick Clendenen Chair in Women's and Gender History, and chair of the Department of History at American University.

A specialist in American Jewish history and women’s history, she was the recipient of the American Jewish Historical Society’s Lee Max Friedman Award for distinguished service. Dr. Nadell’s books include “ Women Who Would Be Rabbis: A History of Women's Ordination, 1889-1985” (Beacon Press, 1998), which was a finalist for the National Jewish Book Award. Her new book, co-edited with American University Professor Kate Haulman, is “ Making Women's Histories: Beyond National Perspectives” (New York University Press, 2013). Dr. Nadell’s consulting work for museums includes the Library of Congress and the new National Museum of American Jewish History on Philadelphia’s Independence Mall.

Photo above, Mary Karr

Last modified: 09-24-14 11:09 AM

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