Russian Jews in the Turmoil of History: Three Ages of Stalinism

Nov. 18, 2020, 12:30-1:45pm

Join Harvard's Davis Center for a talk with Luba Jorgenson, a leading French cultural historian of Stalinism and the Gulag, on  the destinies of Jews during Stalinist terror. 

 In examining Jewish life during three eras of Stalinism, Jurgenson will read Soviet and Jewish history through the lenses of three prominent writers: the memoirist and chronicler of the Great Terror Evgenia Ginzburg (1904–1977), the political philosopher, Zionist activist, and memoirist Julius (Yuly) Margolin (1900–1971), and the great Yiddish poet and playwright Peretz Markish (1895–1952). All three were victims of Stalinist repression at key moments in Soviet history: the Great Terror, the beginning of the WWII, and the postwar antisemitic campaign. By tracing the turbulent and tragic paths of these writers, Jurgenson's lecture will analyze Jewish survival and death in the USSR and investigate Stalinist attitudes and policies toward the Jewish population.


Luba Jurgenson, writer, translator and full professor in the department of Slavic studies, Université Paris-Sorbonne

Maxim D. Shrayer (moderator), professor of Russian, English and Jewish studies, Boston College; director, Project on Russian and Eurasian Jewry, Davis Center