Skip to main content

International Workshop: Resisting the Path to Genocide

Individual Resistance

Please join us for an international and interdisciplinary workshop on individual resistance to genocide.

The interdisciplinary research cluster “Resisting the Path to Genocide” at USC addresses the fundamental question of what enables people to oppose or resist racist ideologies, state discrimination practices, or the active participation in mass atrocities. For our third international workshops, we are focusing on the question of what enables individual people to resist genocide or other forms of mass violence?

The program contains a range of topics from scholars across a range of disciplines, and the keynote presentation is excerpts from a new documentary.

The first day's events take place on USC's campus; the second day takes place at the Villa Aurora in the Pacific Palisades. Attendance on both days is free and open to the public. For further information and to RSVP, please contact Alida Liberman at

The program: Friday, September 27 USC, Doheny Library, Library Friends Lecture Hall, room 240

Morning Session: 10:00 am-12:30pm

Christoph Kreutzmuller - History, Villa der Wannseekonferenz, Berlin, Germany -- Jewish Business owners in Berlin 1933-1942

Aleksandra Loewenau -- History of Medicine, Oxford Brookes University, GB -- Prisoners' Resistance Against Nazi Medical Experiments at Ravensbruck, Auschwitz and Dachau

Marta Ansilewska -- Jewish Studies, Humboldt-Universitat zu Berlin, Germany - Freed by Baptism? - Identity Change as Survival Strategy of Polish Child Survivors

Luncheon 12.30-1.30pm Film screening 1:30 - 3:00pm Pierre Sauvage - Chambon Foundation, Los Angeles

Presentation of excerpts from documentaries: And Crown Thy Good: Varian Fry in Marseille (excerpts from the work-in--progress)

Three Righteous Christians (from We Were There-Christianity and the Holocaust)

Afternoon session 3:30 - 5:30pm

Selma Leydesdorff - History, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands -- Sacha Pecherski: The Forgotten Leader of the Resistance in Sobibor

Paul Morrow -- Philosophy, Vanderbilt University, USA -- Responsibility, Resistance, and the Limits of Praiseworthiness

Saturday, September 28 Villa Aurora, Pacific Palisades

Morning Session: 10:00 am - 12:30pm

Robin Krause - History, Clark University, Worcester, USA -- Estorff as Perpetrator and Resistor in German Southwest Africa

Stephen McLoughlin -- Political Science, Griffith University, Australia -- The Role of Political Elites in Resisting the Path to Genocide.

Paul Bartrop -- History, Florida Gulf Coast University, USA -- Acts of Goodness in the Face of Genocide: Jewish Leadership in Sarajevo and Mostar, 1992-1995

Public reading: 1.30 pm

Sviatlana Kurs, Writer and current Feuchtwanger Fellow (Villa Aurora) “The Archivist's Visit”.