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The Institute | The Institute Director | Inspiration for the Institute | Activities of Advisory Board Members

The Institute

The Remember the Women Institute ounded in 1997 and based in New York City, conducts and encourages research and cultural activities that contribute to including women in history. Special emphasis is on women in the context of the Holocaust and its aftermath. Through research and related activities, the stories of women -- from the point of view of women -- are made available to be integrated into history and collective memory. The work of the Institute has influenced academic research and publications, as well as popular culture, by encouraging the inclusion of all of humanity in historical and commemorative representations. The projects of the Institute include carrying out research on women and the Holocaust, co-publishing books, creating exhibits, organizing panels at conferences, and cooperating with individuals and other institutes and organizations for programs, films, and exhibits.

One major project is the group art exhibition, VIOLATED! Women in Holocaust and Genocide, and art exhibition featuring 30 artists and 47 artworks at the Ronald Feldman Gallery in New York City, April 12-May 12, 2018. This exhibition grew out of our research project to identify Holocaust survivors and witnesses of sexual violence who are willing to bear witness. The 2010 publication of Sexual Violence against Jewish Women during the Holocaust (Brandeis University Press/University Press of New England, Hadassah-Brandeis Institute's Series on Jewish Women), edited by Sonja M. Hedgepeth and Rochelle G. Saidel, was the first book to be published on the subject. With contributions from historians, social scientists, literary and film critics, and psychologists, the anthology co-published by Remember the Women Institute, opened a window into a world that had been virtually unknown. Some victims' experiences are referenced in the book, but most survivors have neither spoken out nor come together to share their experiences.

Rape and sexual violence in connection with later genocides have been well documented, including those in the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan, Iraq, Cambodia, and Guatemala. In these cases, some women have come forward and found solidarity in each other and those who support them. Some of these genocides are depicted in the VIOLATED! Exhibition. The sexual enslavement during World War II of "comfort women" by the Japanese military was exposed only fifty years after the war, and the testimony of Kim Hak Soon, then age 67, inspired more than 200 other Korean women to speak out.

Books that have been published in cooperation with Remember the Women Institute include: Sexual Violence against Jewish Women during the Holocaust (eds. Hedgepeth and Saidel, Brandeis University Press/University Press of New England, 2010); The Jewish Women of Ravensbrück Concentration Camp (Saidel, University of Wisconsin Press, 2004, paperback 2006, Hebrew 2007, and Portuguese 2009); Mielec, Poland: The Shtetl That Became a Nazi Concentration Camp (Saidel, Gefen Publishers, 2012); and Fiorello's Sister: Gemma La Guardia Gluck's Story (Gluck, ed. Saidel, Syracuse University Press, 2007). Exhibits include Women of Ravensbrück, Portraits of Courage: Art by Julia Terwilliger for the Florida Holocaust Museum in St. Petersburg, FL, and an exhibit about Gemma La Guardia Gluck for Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, New York.

Remember the Women Institute has organized panels on women and the Holocaust that include: the groundbreaking workshop, “Beyond Anne Frank: Teaching about Women and the Holocaust,” at a Conference on Teaching the Holocaust, Yad Vashem, Jerusalem (2006); various panels at the Scholars' Conference on the Holocaust; the first session dealing with women and the Holocaust (2005) and with sexual violence during the Holocaust (2009) at the World Congress of Jewish Studies, Jerusalem; the first session dealing with sexual violence during the Holocaust, the Association for Jewish Studies (2010); and a special panel at a Women and the Holocaust conference in Warsaw, Poland (2011).

Board of Directors

Dr. Rochelle G. Saidel, President
Dr. Guilherme A. Plonski, Treasurer
Dr. Sonja Hedgepeth

Advisory Board 

Dr. Monika Adamczyk-Garbowska
Dr. Elizabeth Baer
Dr. Judy Baumel-Schwartz
Barbara Becker
Dr. Susan Benedict
Dr. Ellen Ben-Sefer
Dr. Eva Alterman Blay
Noreen Brand
Dr. Joyce Brenner
Dr. Meghan Brodie
Dr. Batya Brutin
Aviva Cantor
Judy Cohen
Rabbi Tami Crystal
Joan Dean
Dr. Karin Doerr
Dr. Insa Eschebach
Dr. Eva Fogelman
Dr. Myrna Goldenberg
Bonnie Gurewitsch
Dr. Esther Hertzog
Dr. Sara R. Horowitz
Elizabeth Howitt
Dr. Mary Johnson
Dr. Marcia Sachs Littell
Dr. Cheyenne Martin
Dr. Dalia Ofer
Dr. Nancy Ordway
Rosemarie Reed
Dr. Shulamit Reinharz
Lilly Rivlin
Jean Bloch Rosensaft
Anna Rosmus
Dr. Rosa Ester Rossini
Joan Roth
Dr. Nancy Rupprecht
Dr. Marilyn Safir
Rachel Lulov Segall
Dr. Alice Shalvi
Dr. Miryam Sivan
Dr. Nechama Tec


Projects under the auspices of the Institute have received support from: The American Jewish Committee Jacob Blaustein Institute for the Advancement of Human Rights, The Phyllis Backer Foundation, CNPq-Brazilian National Science and Technology Council, The Five Millers Family Foundation, The Goethe Institute, The Lucius N. Littauer Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, The Philadelphia Center on the Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights, the Gertrude and Philip Hoffman Philanthropic Fund of the Pittsburgh United Jewish Federation Foundation, the Ruth Turner Fund, the S. H. and Helen R. Scheuer Family Foundation, The Schaina and Josephina Lurje Memorial Foundation, and other generous individuals and foundations. The Institute, a 501(c)(3) organization registered as a not-for-profit corporation in the State of New York, is seeking financial support from private foundations and individuals interested in supporting research and related academic and cultural activities that address women’s issues, Holocaust-related issues, and Jewish women's issues.

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