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Holocaust Survivor and Novelist Luna Kaufman to Speak at FAU

BOCA RATON, FL (January 6, 2010) – Florida Atlantic University’s Raddock Family Eminent Scholar Chair in Holocaust Studies presents Holocaust survivor and novelist Luna Kaufman with “The Responsibility of Freedom: Reflections of a Holocaust Survivor.” The lecture will take place on Sunday, January 17 at 4 p.m. in the Performing Arts Building, room 101, on FAU’s Boca Raton campus, located at 777 Glades Road.  The lecture is free and open to the public.

From concentration camp teenager to highly respected American activist, Kaufman's life has been a remarkable odyssey, capped in 2009 by an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters awarded to her by Seton Hall University in recognition of her outstanding work in developing Jewish-Christian relations. The honor coincided with the release of her memoir, Luna's Life: A Journey of Forgiveness and Triumph, in which she shares her personal experiences from her childhood in Poland to her adulthood that led her across three continents.

Kaufman was fortunate to survive the Holocaust with her mother and return to her hometown of Krakow. She graduated from Jagelonian University with a degree in musicology and then emigrated to Israel, and later to the United States. Upon arriving in the States, she began lecturing on the Holocaust, emphasizing “how we lived, not how we died.” She helped organize the first Holocaust seminar for New Jersey public school teachers and was elected the first woman president in the 80-year-history of Temple Sholom in Plainfield, NJ. Kaufman was also instrumental in commissioning “Flame,” a Holocaust memorial sculpture by internationally renowned sculptor Natan Rapoport. At the sculpture's installation, New Jersey Governor Thomas H. Kean announced the formation of the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education. The sculpture now hangs in the Museum of Jewish Heritage in Battery Park, New York City.

Kaufman wrote in her memoir,  “Those who know freedom understand the responsibilities that accompany this great value.” This commitment to fostering interfaith and interracial respect and harmony led to her work with the late Sister Rose Thering, a former nun and professor at Seton Hall University and one of the world's most outspoken advocates of religious accord, having led 58 trips to Israel to acquaint Christian leaders with the country. Sister Rose was one of the principal catalysts in the 1963 repudiation of anti-Semitism by Pope John XXIII and the Second Vatican Council.

The lecture is the second annual Erna F. And Henry S. Rubinstein Memorial Lecture in Holocaust Studies.  No reservations are required. For further information, call 561-297-2979.

- FAU –

About Florida Atlantic University:

Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serves more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts 10 colleges:  College of Architecture, Urban & Public Affairs, Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Biomedical Science, the College of Business, the College of  Education, the College of  Engineering & Computer Science, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Graduate College,  the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science.  

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