Dr. Alan Berger
Raddock Family Eminent Scholar Chair for Holocaust Studies
Alan L. Berger occupies the Raddock Family Eminent Scholar Chair for Holocaust Studies, the first Holocaust chair established in the state of Florida, and is Professor of Judaic Studies at Florida Atlantic University where he also directs the Center for the Study of Values and Violence after Auschwitz. Berger founded and directed the Holocaust and Judaic Studies B.A. Program at FAU (1998-2005). Prior to this, he was a professor in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University where he founded and directed the Jewish Studies Program. While at Syracuse, Berger served as Acting Chair of the Religion Department and Interim Chair of the Fine Arts Department. He also was the Visiting Gumenick Professor of Judaica at the College of William and Mary. Berger has chaired the Annual Scholars’ Conference on the Holocaust and the Churches, and guest chaired the Lessons and Legacies of the Holocaust Conference in 1998 and 2010. He was series editor of “Religion, Theology, and the Holocaust,” Syracuse University Press (1998-2004).
Among his books are Crisis and Convenant: The Holocaust in American Jewish Fiction, Judaism in the Modern World (Editor), and Children of Job: American Second-Generation Witnesses to the Holocaust, (Foreword by Elie Wiesel), the first systematic study of American films and novels of children of Holocaust survivors analyzing the psycho-social and theological legacy of the Holocaust on the second generation. This book was discussed in a New York Times article on the second generation. Second-Generation Voices: Reflections by Children of Holocaust Survivors and Perpetrators, which he and his wife Naomi co-edited, won the 2002 B’nai Zion National Media Award. He is also co-editor of Encyclopedia of Holocaust Literature (Spring, 2002) which received a Booklist Best Reference Book of 2002 award and the Outstanding Reference Source 2003 – Reference and User Services Association of the ALA (RUSA). The Continuing Agony: From the Carmelite Convent to the Crosses at Auschwitz (Spring 2004) was nominated for the American Catholic Historical Association’s John Gilmary Shea Prize. Jewish American and Holocaust Literature: Representation in the Postmodern World also appeared in 2004. Jewish-Christian Dialogue: Drawing Honey from the Rock of which he is co-author, was published by Paragon House in 2008. He is co-editor of the Encyclopedia of Jewish American Literature, which Facts on File published in 2009. A new book Trialogue and Terror: Judaism, Christianity and Islam Respond to 9/11 (Cascade Press) will appear in 2011. His many articles, essays and book chapters appear in a variety of places including Modern Judaism, Modern Language Studies, Religion and American Culture, Journal of Ecumenical Studies, Studies in American Jewish Literature, Saul Bellow Journal, Jewish Book Annual, Sociological Analysis, Australian Journal of Jewish Studies, Judaism, Literature and Belief, Encyclopedia of Jewish-American History and Culture, and Encyclopedia of Genocide. Additionally, he has written over fifty encyclopedia entries. He was guest editor for two special issues of the journal Literature and Belief; “Holocaust Rescuers” and “Elie Wiesel.” He also served as guest editor for a special issue of the Saul Bellow Journal: “Bellow and the Holocaust.” Berger’s reviews have also appeared in leading Jewish periodicals including The Forward, Tikkun, Hadassah Magazine and Midstream.
He has lectured on the Holocaust, Jewish American Literature, Theology, and Christian/Jewish Relations throughout America and in Europe, Australia, South Africa, and Israel. Berger has also spoken at the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Currently he is editor of the new series “Studies in Genocide: Religion, History and Human Rights” for Rowman and Littlefield. Further, he is an Associate Editor of Studies in American Jewish Literature, and serves on the editorial boards of Literature and Belief, Shofar, and Saul Bellow Journal. He has also been a judge for the National Jewish Book Awards in the categories of Autobiography and Fiction, and is on the Readers Committee for The Elie Wiesel Prize in Ethics Essay Contest. Berger is a Founding Associate Director of the Association for the Study of Jewish American and Holocaust Literature, and is a member of the Commissioner’s Task Force on Holocaust Education for the state of Florida. Professor Berger was interviewed by Renee Montagne of National Public Radio’s morning edition in conjunction with the 60th Anniversary of the capture of Auschwitz by the Soviet Army. He spoke about the children and grandchildren of Holocaust survivors.
Berger was awarded the Degree of Doctor of Letters Honoris Causa from Luther College in 1999.