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QCC Holocaust Center features noted authors

The first lecture, to be held April 18th, will feature Berger, deputy education editor of The New York Times, whose book provides a moving account of the 140,000 refugees who came to the U.S. between 1947 and 1953 and reconstructed their lives through courage, luck and hard work.

On May 16th, Rigg will discuss his provocative study which illustrates why Hitler’s heinous process of racial cleansing was particularly fraught with contradiction and confusion in the case of the German military where a startlingly large number of soldiers (including high-ranking officials) were of Jewish ancestry.

“Joseph Berger’s book is a poignant memoir of survivors who came to the U.S. and the lives they built here, and I thought it was something people should know more about,” said William L. Shulman, director of the QCC Holocaust Resource Center and Archives, who planned the lecture series. “Bryan Mark M. Rigg has also written an interesting study about a subject that is little known, and I think it is important to hear about this kind of material.”

Berger, who was born in Russia in 1945, is the son of displaced persons who immigrated to the United States at the age of 5. At The New York Times, he has reported on religion and education, and he has also served as the paper’s bureau chief in White Plains.

Rigg received his B.A. with honors in history from Yale University in 1996 and was awarded the Henry Fellowship for graduate study at Cambridge University. He went on to receive his master’s from Cambridge in 1997 and his Ph.D. from the institution in 2002. Currently professor of history at American Military University, he has served as a volunteer in the Israeli Army and as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Queensborough Community College’s Holocaust Resource Center and Archives was founded by Shulman in 1983 to provide an educational resource for organizations and schools in the community. The center’s mission is to: promote remembrance of the Holocaust through education; assist students, scholars and teachers; preserve oral testimony of survivors; sponsor public lectures by experts in the field; exhibit documents, photographs and art related to the Holocaust; publish teaching aids; and help trace victims and survivors.

Both lectures are free and open to the public and will be held at 1 p.m. in room 136 of the Medical Arts Building on campus. No reservations are necessary. For more information, call 718-281-5770. The College is located at 56th Avenue and Springfield Boulevard, Bayside (exit No. 29 on the L.I.E.).

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