Join noted historian and author Robin Judd as she launches her book, Between Two Worlds: Jewish War Brides After the Holocaust. Dr. Judd will be in conversation with Birgitte Søland, an expert in both Modern European History and Women’s Gender, and Sexuality History. Both women are professors in the Department of History at The Ohio State University.
Registration for this event is on Eventbrite. The admission fee is waived with the purchase of Between Two Worlds.
JEWISHCOLUMBUS’ WOMEN’S PHILANTHROPY & COMMUNITY RELATIONS COUNCIL, JEWISH COMMUNITY CENTER OF GREATER COLUMBUS, OSU HILLEL, OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY’S DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY, and OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY MELTON SCHOOL OF JEWISH STUDIES are Gramercy’s Community Partners for this program.
Facing the harrowing task of rebuilding a life in the wake of the Holocaust, many Jewish survivors, community and religious leaders, and Allied soldiers viewed marriage between Jewish women and military personnel as a way to move forward after unspeakable loss. Proponents believed that these unions were more than just a ticket out of war-torn Europe: they would help the Jewish people repopulate after the attempted annihilation of European Jewry.
Historian Robin Judd, whose grandmother survived the Holocaust and married an American soldier after liberation, introduces us to the Jewish women who lived through genocide and went on to wed American, Canadian, and British military personnel after the war. She offers an intimate portrait of how these unions emerged and developed—from meeting and courtship to marriage and immigration to life in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom—and shows how they helped shape the postwar world by touching thousands of lives, including those of the chaplains who officiated their weddings, the Allied authorities whose policy decisions structured the couples' fates, and the bureaucrats involved in immigration and acculturation. The stories Judd tells are at once heartbreaking and restorative, and she vividly captures how the exhilaration of the brides' early romances coexisted with survivor's guilt, grief, and apprehension at the challenges of starting a new life in a new land.
Robin Judd is a specialist in Jewish, transnational, and gender history, with particular interests in Holocaust studies and the history of antisemitism. She is the author of the forthcoming book, Between Two Worlds: Jewish War Brides After the Holocaust (University of North Carolina Press) and Contested Rituals: Circumcision, Kosher Butchering, and German-Jewish Political Life in Germany, 1843-1933 (Cornell University Press). Robin is currently the President of the Association for Jewish Studies, the largest international learned society and professional organization representing Jewish studies and is a voting member of Ohio's Holocaust and Genocide Memorial and Education Commission. She has received seven teaching awards, including the OSU Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching.
Birgitte Søland is professor of history at The Ohio State University, specializing in the history of women; children and childhood; and the history of the family. She has published works on European girls and young women coming-of-age in the in the early twentieth century. She is the author of Becoming Modern: Young Women and the Reconstruction of Womanhood in the 1920s and is currently working on a book about children growing up in orphanage and foster care in the 20thcentury.