WWU’s Ray Wolpow Institute to host international symposium on Holocaust literature

Symposium organized to contribute to the Cambridge History of Holocaust Literature in partnership with the University of Leeds/UK, Washington University in St. Louis and with support from the Ray Wolpow Institute at Western

Bellingham, WA, Sept. 25 — On Sept. 29 and 30, Western Washington University’s Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity (RWI) will welcome thirty international scholars to campus for a symposium on the Cambridge History of Holocaust Literature.  

Working together, this cohort from North America, Europe, Australia, and the Middle East will take on the task of rethinking the academic landscape of Holocaust narrative, a body of literature of many thousands of texts, and to theorize – for the first time – Holocaust literature as a comprehensive literary system. 

The symposium is organized by Stuart Taberner (University of Leeds/UK) and Erin McGlothlin (Washington University St. Louis) with support from the Ray Wolpow Institute, at WWU.  

Sandra Alfers, director of the Ray Wolpow Institute at WWU, said, “It is a distinct honor for us at the Ray Wolpow Institute to host this esteemed group of experts on Holocaust literature. We look forward to the future contributions that the researchers will make to the Cambridge History of Holocaust Literature, which will be among the definitive bodies of scholarly work for this field.” 

The Cambridge History of Holocaust Literature, edited by Taberner and McGlothlin, aims to construct the complex development, canonization, and circulation of Holocaust literature and to set the directions for the field of Holocaust literary studies for the next twenty-five years. It is sponsored by a grant from the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council.  


About Western Washington University 

Western Washington University offers more than 200 academic programs on its main campus located in Bellingham, and at additional sites in Anacortes, Bremerton, Everett, Port Angeles and Poulsbo. Western is recognized nationally for its successes, such as being named one of the top public master’s-granting institutions in the Pacific Northwest for 25 years in a row by U.S. News & World Report. The report ranked WWU in the top 10 in the West (out of more than 500 public colleges and universities from Texas to the West Coast) and also spotlights Western as among the best colleges for veterans. WWU is identified as one of the most sustainable, green campuses in the nation by the Sierra Club, is known for being a top producer of prestigious National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Hollings Scholars, Fulbright Scholars, and Peace Corps volunteers, and nationally ranked for graduates who go on to earn research doctorates. The Chronicle of Higher Education’s Academic Workplace report named Western as one of the best colleges in the nation to work for, winning honors in two categories: teaching environment and tenure clarity and process. 


About the Ray Wolpow Institute 

The Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity (RWI) at Western Washington University was established in the summer of 2016. Home to a minor in Holocaust and Genocide Studies, the only such undergraduate program at a public university in Washington State, the institute is named after Western Professor Ray Wolpow, faculty emeritus at WWU’s Woodring College of Education and founder of the Northwest Center for Holocaust, Genocide, and Ethnocide Education (NWCHGEE).  


Media Contacts 

Jonathan Higgins, jonathan.higgins@wwu.edu, Director of Communications, Western Washington University