, 2023-01-06 03:09:19,
This week in Times Will Tell we are speaking with Professor Alvin Rosenfeld, director of the Center for the Study of Contemporary Anti-Semitism at Indiana University.
Rosenfeld founded the Jewish Studies program at Indiana University some 50 years ago and was its director for 30 years. But retirement has eluded him: In 2009, after observing anti-Jewish hostility rising around the world, he founded the Center for the Study of Contemporary Anti-Semitism.
Rosenfeld visited the Jerusalem office of The Times of Israel on a crisp winter day in late December for a wide-ranging interview on the reasons behind the recent surge in Jew-hatred, as well as his experiences founding one of the first programs of Jewish Studies in the United States.
“The last time I saw Elie [Weisel] Shortly before he died, he was very despondent… He looked at me and said: ‘I have failed… Look at the rise of anti-Semitism today.’ So he thought, I thought, we all think that the more people know about the mass murder and persecution of Jews, the more reluctant they are to speak hostilely against Jews in the public sphere. But we were just wrong,” Rosenfeld said.
While early in his academic career Rosenfeld was able to focus on the poets William Blake and John Wheelwright, his recent work is decidedly darker, dealing with anti-Semitism, Holocaust literature and memory, including the 2011 book “The End of the Holocaust” and 2021. …
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