As a child living in Lithuania during World War II, Yaffa Eliach survived the Holocaust by hiding in attics and underground shelters. As a professor of Judaic studies at New York’s Brooklyn College, Eliach dedicated herself to educating others about the Holocaust and the vibrant Jewish way of life that it obliterated. And this fall, Eliach is sharing her unique perspectives as the 2003 Brueggeman chair in theology.
A pioneer in Holocaust studies, Eliach founded the first Center for Holocaust Documentation and Research in the United States, created the “Tower of Life” photo exhibit at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., and served on President Jimmy Carter’s Holocaust commission. Eliach has authored several books, including “There Once Was a World: A 900-Year Chronicle of the Shtetl Eishyshok” and “Hasidic Tales of the Holocaust,” which won the Christopher Award for Literature. She’s also a contributing editor to both “Encyclopedia Judaica” and the “Women’s Studies Encyclopedia.”