"Never Again?" 2014 Holocaust Lecture Series Promises to Explore New Ground

Rwanda Ambassador Mathilde Mukantabana is Featured Speaker


mathilde.jpgThe upcoming Holocaust and Genocide Lecture Series entitled "Never Again?" at Sonoma State University promises to explore new ground with speakers covering a diverse set of topics including the genocides in Guatemala and Bosnia. The 31-year-old lecture series runs on Tuesdays at 4 p.m. from Jan. 14 through April 29 in Warren Auditorium.

A highlight of the event is the March 25 appearance of the Rwandan ambassador to the U.S., Her Excellency Mathilde Mukantabana, who will discuss the state of affairs in Rwandan society 20 years after the genocide. 

She has been a long-time speaker in the lecture series and a member of the Alliance for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide Board.

Professor Diane Parness delivers a lecture on the increasing anti-Semitic tensions in Hungary and Dr. Barry Preisler's lecture focuses on the origins of anti-Semitism in Europe.

Professors Stephen Bittner and Eric Williams return to share their perspectives on the history and consequences of the Holocaust. Professor Sergio LaPorta will present the annual Armenian Genocide Memorial Lecture.


Professor Carol Rittner, RSM, a prominent Holocaust scholar, delivers the Robert L. Harris Memorial Lecture on gender and genocide with her colleague Dr. Marsha Raticoff, Grossman Professor of Holocaust Studies at The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.

Dr. James Waller returns to share his insights how humans are capable of "Becoming Evil" on April 1.


The full schedule includes:


Jan. 14: Introduction to the series & "The Master Race", Prof. Diane L. Parness, Sonoma State University

Jan. 21: The Holocaust in Historical Perspective, Prof. Stephen Bittner, Sonoma State University

Jan. 28: Breaking the Silence: A Holocaust Childhood, Paul Schwarzbart

Feb. 4: The Armenian Genocide, (Armenian Genocide Memorial Lecture) Prof. Sergio LaPorta, CSU Fresno, Armenian Studies Program  

Feb. 11: The Concept of Genocide, Prof. Myrna Goodman, Sonoma State University

Feb. 18: Origins of Anti-Semitism in Europe, Prof. Barry Preisler, Sonoma State University

Feb. 25: Lessons Learned from a Holocaust Childhood, Hans Angress

March 4: Perspectives On International War Crimes, Prof. Eric Williams, Sonoma State University

March 11: The Bosnian Genocide--Past, Present and Future, Mirza Velagic, Voices of the Bosnian Genocide

March 25: Rwanda Twenty Years After Genocide, Ambassador Mathilde Mukantabana, Rwandan Ambassador to the United States

April 1: Becoming Evil, Prof. James Waller, Cohen Endowed Chair of Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Keene State College

April 8: Gender & Genocide (Robert L. Harris Memorial Lecture), Prof. Carol Rittner, RSM, Distinguished Professor of Holocaust & Genocide Studies and the Dr. Marsha Raticoff, Grossman Professor of Holocaust Studies at The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.

April 15: The Guatemalan Genocide, Prof. Beatriz Manz, University of California, Berkeley

April 22: Hungary: The Perfect Storm, Prof. Diane Parness, Sonoma State University

April 29: Genocide Beneath Our Feet, Prof. Greg Sarris, Endowed Professor, Sonoma State University and Chairman, Federated Indians of Graton Rancher


The Holocaust and genocide lectures have featured the participation of Holocaust survivors, liberators and rescuers, as well as the contributions of leading scholars in the field. Perhaps the most powerful aspect of this series is the personal eyewitness accounts of Holocaust survivors and more recently survivors of the Rwandan, Cambodian, and Bosnian genocides.


The speakers, students and the general audience are challenged to face the difficult subject of man's brutality and inhumanity, and to reflect on the common and varied causes of genocide. Students are encouraged to consider issues of individual accountability and to formulate ideas about how genocide might be prevented.


Lecture series faculty regularly receive comments from students about how the experience of this series has moved them to evaluate their own moral and ethical responsibility.


For further information, contact Diane Parness, Holocaust Lecture Series Academic Coordinator, (707) 664-3142.

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