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Holocaust Studies Program

Holocaust Studies Program

WGC’s Holocaust Studies Program is dedicated to the in-depth research and teaching of the Holocaust. This innovative program was the first in Israel to provide undergraduates with substantial course offerings in Holocaust Studies. The program’s faculty and international conferences have earned worldwide esteem, and have established Western Galilee College as a leading center for Holocaust studies and research.

Academic Studies
Holocaust Studies are offered by the College as part of an Interdisciplinary B.A. Through emphasis on a multi-disciplinary approach and a variety of supplemental academic activities, students gain a comprehensive insight into the wide range of disciplinary perspectives related to the Holocaust. Their understanding of historical issues, society, education, and philosophy is deepened as they confront questions related to morality and humanity. This knowledge is critical for understanding modern Israel and its identity.
Courses offered by the program include: Daily life in the Ghettos; The Development of Anti-Semitism and Anti-Jewish Policies; Childhood in the Shadow of Destruction; Rehabilitation and Commemoration in the Aftermath of the Holocaust; Medicine and the Holocaust; Israeli Holocaust Memory; and more. The program also offers specialized Holocaust Studies courses tailored to the curricula and perspectives of the Criminology, Education, Management, and Sociology academic programs.
The biennial "Future of Holocaust Testimonies Conference and Workshop" attracts scholars from around the globe. Initiated in 2010, this interdisciplinary conference series is dedicated to the research and use of survivors' testimonies.
Additional conferences are held every other year with varying themes. Past topics include: Medicine in the Holocaust; olocaustJewish Life in the Ghettos under Nazi Rule; Holocaust and Film: Cinema Teaching History; Child Holocaust Survivors in Testimony, Research and Literature; Jewish Historical Writing.
The program has ongoing cooperation with the Ghetto Fighters’ House Museum (located near the College), Yad Vashem, and the Embassy of Poland in Tel Aviv. Collaborative projects with international and national institutions are of profound importance to the program. Partners include: Indiana University, Bloomington; University of Virginia; University of Hartford; the University of Southern California Shoah Foundation; the International Tracing Service Archive in Bad Arolsen, Germany; the Max Mannheimer Study Center, Dachau; Bar-Ilan University; and Haifa University.
Our faculty is committed to cutting edge research and scholarship on the Holocaust and its aftermath. We are greatly interested in collaboration with researchers and research institutions worldwide. The program encourages new publications and endeavors to establish infrastructure for furthering Holocaust research.
WGC’s Center for Holocaust Research promotes research and dissemination of knowledge on the Holocaust and its aftermath. The Center endeavors to conduct research projects with international scholars based on the extensive network of researchers established by the program through its international collaborations and conferences, and aims to serve as a home for young researchers from Israel and abroad with relevant research interests.
Key Aims of the Center:
  • Support existing research and promote the advancement of new research activities.
  • Serve as a platform for cooperation with researchers and institutions worldwide.
  • Establish the College as a hub for international Holocaust research.
  • Create an infrastructure for obtaining grants and funds to support research.
Key Research Themes:
  • Children in the Holocaust and Beyond
  • Medicine and the Holocaust
  • Holocaust Testimonies and Holocaust Memory
  • Holocaust Historiography
Dr. Boaz Cohen, Head of the Holocaust Studies Program
Dr. Cohen's research interests include early Holocaust research and early child survivor testimonies, both in their historical, social, and cultural contexts.  Dr. Cohen’s book “Israeli Holocaust Research: Birth and Evolution,” was published by Yad Vashem in 2010 (and in English by Routledge in 2012). He is editor of a forthcoming volume on early children’s testimonies (Magnes Press, Hebrew University), as well as a volume on Holocaust survivor historians (Taylor & Francis).

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Dr. Miriam Offer, Lecturer
Dr. Offer specializes in the study of Jewish medicine during the Holocaust and in the research of daily life in the ghettos. In addition, she is a co-organizer of the annual Israeli conference on Holocaust and medicine. Dr. Offer's book on medicine in the Warsaw Ghetto “White Coat in the Ghetto” was recently published by Yad Vashem (an English publication is forthcoming).

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