23 2014

Uncertain Refuge: Italy and the Jews During the Holocaust

6:30PM - 8:00PM  

Tappan Library 93 Main Street
Tappan, NY 10983
845-359-3877 jgross@rcls.org


Dr. Florette R. Koffler, emerita professor at St. Thomas Aquinas College, will be speaking about her research for the book Uncertain Refuge: Italy and the Jews during the Holocaust (University of Illinois Press), the interviews that gave rise to her study, and will offer further findings about Jews in Italy before and during the Second World War Era. Of the approximate 50,000 Jews who resided in pre-war Italy, 42,000 survived the era. An Italian journalist set out to understand why. Why in a country aligned with the Fascist state of Germany, was there such a large percentage of survivors? Evidence culled from more than 60 interviews translated into English by Dr.s Florette and Richard Koffler, suggest that there was some official protection of both Italian and foreign-born Jews in Italy. Each interviewee reports unspeakable terror alongside courageous rescue efforts. Speaker bio. F.R. Koffler is emerita professor of Modern Languages at St. Thomas Aquinas College. Born and educated in Bucharest, Romania and Spain, she lived in Italy before arriving in the U.S. She holds a Ph.D from the University of Pennsylvania, has taught all levels of Spanish and Italian, and worked on, and published her research on Medieval and Renaissance Spain, the Judeo- Spanish folk ballad tradition, and Pan-European literary relations. Part of her family survived the Holocaust in Romania. Dr. Koffler will be accompanied by her husband, Dr. Richard Koffler, a retired academic publish and editor, and adjunct professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University. He served as co-editor and translator for Uncertain Refuge. Space is limited. Pre-register online at http://bit.ly/1hulixv