2009-10 Lecture Series

Henryk Grynberg

Writer, Poet, Playwright & Essayist

Date: Friday, March 26, 2010
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Location: 251 FH

Title: "Reality surpassing imagination: why I write documentary prose"

Henryk Grynberg is an award-winning writer, poet, playwright, and essayist. He has written more than twenty books exploring the fate of the Polish Jews in the Holocaust and the trauma after. His return to Poland was the subject of the 1996 PBS Frontline program, “Shtetl.” He is a frequent lecturer in Poland. Grynberg’s writing makes abundant use of biographical and autobiographical material, as well as archival research. His documentary prose straddles the boundaries of history and literature. Henryk Grynberg’s writing records the fates of people saved from oblivion by the writer in the conviction that doing so is both the duty of literature towards the victims of the Holocaust and a confirmation of the sanctity of human life itself. Three of his major works are available in English: Children of Zion (Northwestern University Press, 1998) The Jewish War and Victory (Northwestern University Press, 2001), and Drohobycz, Drohobycz (Penguin, 2002).

Barnes and Noble book sellers will be selling the speakers books immediately after the lecture. The author will also be available to sign books. 

Phone: N/A
E-mail: N/A
Web site:

Brian Porter-Szücs

Professor of History, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

Date: Friday, January 15, 2010
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Location: 251 FH

Title: "Catholicism and the Ideology of Homogeneity in Polish History"

Brian Porter-Szücs is Associate Professor of History at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, where he specializes in the history of Poland and modern Roman Catholicism. He is the author of When Nationalism Began to Hate: Imagining Modern Politics in 19th Century Poland (Oxford University Press,2000) and For God and Fatherland: Catholicism, Modernity, and Poland (Oxford University Press, 2009). He teaches Eastern Europe to 1900; Eastern Europe in the 20th Century; Survey of East Central Europe; Europe in the Era of Total War; Many Polands: A History of Multiculturalism in Northeastern Europe.

Phone: (734) 764-6803
Web site:

John J. Bukowczyk

Professor of History, Wayne State University

Date: Friday, December 4, 2009
Time: 4:00 p.m
Location: 251 French Hall

Title: "Europe's Other Heart of Darkness: Imperialism Before Empire"

From the history of Polish immigration to the United States, Professor Bukowczyk will discuss the themes of race and empire as they involve of Poland and the lands and peoples of the European periphery.

John J. Bukowczyk is Professor of History at Wayne State University and specialist in Polish immigration and ethnic history. He has published And My Children Did Not Know Me:A History of the Polish Americans (recently re-issued as A History of the Polish Americans) and Polish Americans and Their History:Community, Culture, and Politics (editor). Professor Bukowczyk has won the American Historical Association's William Gilbert Award for the Best Article on Teaching History and the Gold Cross of Merit from the Republic of Poland for scholarly and civic contributions. Professor Bukowczyk edits the Ohio University Press Polish and Polish-American Studies Series and The Journal of American Ethnic History.

Phone: (313) 577-2799
Web site:

Keely Stauter-Halsted

Associate Professor of History, Michigan State University

Date: Friday, October 16th, 2009
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Location: 251 French Hall

Title: "Polish-Jewish Relations: A Thousand Year Conversation"

Jews first arrived on Polish territory before the medieval state was consolidated. They have remained central to the country's self-identity ever since. This lecture exams the parallel history of Jews and Polish Christians over a millennium of interaction and accommodation. It focuses on key turning points that are best understood through an examination of interactions between the two cultures. The lecture pays particular attention to developments in Krakow and in Galicia (southern Poland), where the Wyatt Exploration group will travel. It finishes with an extended analysis of the post-World War II resurgence of Jewish communities in Poland and a discussion of the future of Jewish life there.

Keely Stauter-Halsted is Associate Professor History at Michigan State University and Associate Chair of the Department of History. She has written Nation in the Village: Genesis of National Identity in Austrian Poland, 1848-1914. Her specialties include: 19th century Galicia/Austrian Poland, Jewish minorities, and Habsburg imperial commemoration. She is also a member of the Core Faculty of MSU’s Center for Gender in Global Context. Professor Stauter-Halsted’s current research focuses on prostitution in nineteenth and early twentieth-century Poland.

Phone: (517) 432-8222 Ext. 100
Web site: