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The Book Smugglers-David Fishman-1/26-2022
January 26, 2022 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
The Book Smugglers of the Vilna Ghetto: A Story of Moral Resistance by Professor David E. Fishman
In Vilna, the city Jews called “The Jerusalem of Lithuania,” a group of ghetto inmates risked their lives during World War II to rescue thousands of rare books, documents, and works of art from the Nazis. In an operation that lasted eighteen months, they smuggled the materials past guards and buried them in bunkers. Those members of the group who survived the War returned after Vilna’s liberation and dug up the materials. They eventually smuggled the books across Europe until they reached the United States and Israel. What did they rescue, and why did they do it?
Dr. David E. Fishman is a professor of Jewish History at The Jewish Theological Seminary of America. He is the author of numerous books and articles on the history and culture of East European Jewry. His most recent book, The Book Smugglers: Partisans, Poets, and the Race to Save Jewish Treasures from the Nazis, received a National Jewish Book Award. Dr. Fishman also serves as director of Project Judaica, which publishes guides to Jewish archival materials in the Former Soviet Union.
Dr. Fishman has taught at Brandeis University, Bar-Ilan University, Russian State University in Moscow, and Vilnius University in Lithuania. He serves on the Academic Committee of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
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