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Dr. Sara Horowitz
2009-2010 Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies Fellow

"Gender, Genocide, and Jewish Memory: Culture, Memory, and the Holocaust"

Professional Background

Sara Horowitz is Professor in the Division of Humanities and Department of Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics and Director of the Center for Jewish Studies at York University, Canada. She received a Ph.D. in comparative literature (French, Hebrew, and English) and an M.A. in French literature from Brandies University; an M.A. in English literature from Columbia University; and a B.A. in English literature, magna cum laude, from the City College of the City University of New York. For her Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies Fellowship, Professor Horowitz conducted research on “Gender, Genocide, and Jewish Memory: Culture, Memory, and the Holocaust.”

Professor Horowitz is the author of Voicing the Void: Muteness and Memory in Holocaust Fiction (SUNY Press, 1997), which won a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Book Award, as well as editor of many books and volumes. She was chief editor for the Azrieli Holocaust Memoirs Series, Series I and II (Azrieli Foundation-Centre for Jewish Studies 2007, 2009), which won an Independent Publisher Book Award, Freedom Fighter Category Gold Medal, and editor within the series of Bits and Pieces: A Memoir by Henia Reinhartz (2007), which won a Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Jewish Book Award, and Spring’s End: A Memoir by John Freund (2007). Professor Horowitz writes on antisemitism and memory, testimony, narratives, and trauma related to the Holocaust, particularly from the perspective of female survivors and victims. She is a member of the Academic Committee of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Fellowship Research

During her tenure at the Center, Professor Horowitz researched the presence of gendered images in narrative representations of the Holocaust. Rather than looking at the Holocaust experience solely through the comparative perspective of men and women, she used the lens of gender to explore the construction of cultural memory of the Holocaust. As a literary scholar, Professor Horowitz focused on the way memories and stories of the Holocaust are told or depicted. The study draws upon the long history of images of and ideas about Jewish men and women in European and Jewish cultures, and explores the way such images are perpetuated, challenged, or revised both during the war and in the construction of memory afterwards. The study helps contextualize other global events of atrocity, genocide, mass murder, and gender-specific torture. Professor Horowitz utilized the Museum’s extensive archival material, specifically survivor testimonies, archival photographs, and film footage.

Dr. Horowitz was in residence at the Mandel Center from September 1 to December 15, 2009.