Date of Lecture: November 9, 2016
About the Speaker: A child survivor of the Holocaust, Joseph A. Polak is rabbi emeritus of Hillel House at Boston University and chief justice of the Rabbinical Court of Massachusetts. He is author of the memoir "After the Holocaust the Bells Still Ring," winner of the 2015 National Jewish Book Award for Autobiography, Biography and Memoir.
About the Talk: Rabbi Polak shares his family's experiences: when the Germans first came for them when his mother was 9 months pregnant with him, as prisoner of two concentration camps when he was a toddler, and his reunion with his mother months after their liberation. He explains how many people and many nations were complicit in the crimes of the Holocaust, and how children survivors of the Holocaust have faced distinct lifelong burdens. The youngest living survivor, he says, "What if I’m the last survivor? The answer is you. You will make sure that the lessons and that the story is told. I’m giving you a charge, tonight…. Don’t let this story be forgotten."
His talk is supported by the Kraft-Hiatt Fund for Jewish-Christian Understanding.