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‘Ville’s 38th Holocaust Conference 

The 38th Conference on the Holocaust and Genocide will focus on the theme of “Never Again? Genocide in the 21st Century.”

Dr. Norman Naimark, an internationally known scholar on genocide, an East European Studies professor at Stanford University and a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, will present the keynote speech at Millersville University’s Holocaust and Genocide Conference on April 20. This spring, the Holocaust and Genocide Conference will host two events to discuss the ongoing Russian War against Ukraine and war crimes committed by Russian troops on the occupied territories.

The 38th Conference on the Holocaust and Genocide will focus on the theme of “Never Again? Genocide in the 21st Century.” Speakers and events will discuss the lessons we have learned from the Holocaust and how we can apply our knowledge to the current outbreaks of genocide occurring today in Ukraine.

Dr. Victoria Khiterer, an MU history professor and committee chair for the conference, explains why this conference is essential to hold. “The Millersville University Conference on the Holocaust and Genocide is one of the oldest conferences in the field in the U.S. The conferences promote research and education in the fields, commemorate Holocaust and genocide victims and teaches people to be more tolerant and combat prejudices, anti-Semitism, racism and hate crimes,” she says. “We should do more to stop ongoing genocide and prevent future hate crimes. The genocide perpetrators should be taken to international tribunals. One of the main missions of the Millersville University Conference is to raise awareness about the current genocide and hate crimes.”

On Thursday, April 13, at 4 p.m. in McComsey, room 260, “A Poetic Response to the War in Ukraine” will be held with poets Lyudmyla Khersonska and Olga Livshin, who have both spoken and written about the war in Ukraine.

Dr. Katarzyna Jakubiak, associate professor of English, explains what the poems will focus on. “Khersonska’s poems are lyrical testimonies of the everyday, individual experience of the war. Like Khersonska, Livshin focuses on personal reactions to the war in her poetry, but from the perspective of a member of the Ukrainian diaspora — someone with a strong emotional connection to the ongoing tragedy, and yet forced to observe it from a distance,” she says.

Jakubiak emphasizes the importance of the poetry readings, “This is a unique opportunity to hear from a direct witness of the war in Ukraine and get insight into how the war affects the ordinary lives of Ukrainians. It’s also significant that the poems highlight a female perspective of the war with a particular focus on the disruptions the war brings to domestic life. By giving us access to the individual, intimate experience, the poems of Khersonska and Livshin help to restore our sensitivity and empathy towards our fellow human beings affected by this conflict,” she says.

On Thursday, April 20, at 7 p.m. in Biemesderfer Concert Hall, Winter Visual and Performing Arts Center, The P. Alan and Linda Loss Keynote Lecture: “Atrocity Crimes in Ukraine: Lessons of the Holocaust and the History of Genocide” will feature speaker Dr. Norman Naimark, a Stanford University History professor who focuses his research on the politics and history of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, and the World history of genocide. Throughout the lecture, Naimark will analyze the crimes committed in Ukraine in relation to the Holocaust and other genocides.

All events are free admission, but tickets are required for the keynote speech by Dr. Naimark.

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