Alan L. Berger

Alan L. Berger

Adjunct Instructor in Holocaust and Genocide Studies

Alan L. Berger occupies the Raddock Family Eminent Scholar Chair for Holocaust Studies, the first Holocaust chair established in the state of Florida, and is Professor of Judaic Studies at Florida Atlantic University where he also directs the Center for the Study of Values and Violence after Auschwitz. Berger founded and directed the Holocaust and Judaic Studies B.A. Program at FAU (1998-2005).  Prior to this, he was a professor in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University where he founded and directed the Jewish Studies Program.  He also served as Acting Chair of the Religion Department and Interim Chair of the Fine Arts Department.  He was series editor of “Religion, Theology, and the Holocaust,” Syracuse University Press (1998-2004).  Berger was Visiting Gumenick Associate Professor of Judaica at the College of William and Mary, co-program chair of the Lessons and Legacies of the Holocaust Conference in 2012.  

Among his books are Crisis and Convenant: The Holocaust in American Jewish Fiction, Judaism in the Modern World (Editor), and Children of Job: American Second-Generation Witnesses to the Holocaust, (Foreword by Elie Wiesel), the first systematic study of American films and novels of children of Holocaust survivors analyzing the legacy of the Holocaust on the second generation.  This book was discussed in a New York Times article on the second generation.  Second-Generation Voices: Reflections by Children of Holocaust Survivors and Perpetrators, which he and his wife Naomi co-edited, won the 2002 B’nai Zion National Media Award.  He is also co-editor of Encyclopedia of Holocaust Literature (Spring, 2002) which received a Booklist Best Reference Book of 2002 award and the Outstanding Reference Source 2003 – Reference and User Services Association of the ALA (RUSA).  The Continuing Agony: From the Carmelite Convent to the Crosses at Auschwitz (Spring 2004) was nominated for the American Catholic Historical Association’s John Gilmary Shea Prize.  Jewish American and Holocaust Literature: Representation in the Postmodern World also appeared in 2004.  Jewish-Christian Dialogue: Drawing Honey from the Rock of which he is co-author (with David Patterson), was published by Paragon House in 2008. He is co-editor of the Encyclopedia of Jewish American Literature, which Facts on File published in 2009.  Trialogue and Terror: Judaism, Christianity and Islam Respond to 9/11 (Editor, Cascade Press) appeared in 2012.  Post Holocaust Jewish/Christian Dialogue: After the Flood Before the Rainbow (Editor and contributor) was published in 2015. He is co-author (with Victoria Aarons) of Third Generation Holocaust Representation, Trauma, History, and Memory (Northwestern University Press, 2017).   Another book, Elie Wiesel Messenger for Peace is contracted with Routledge Press in their Historical Americans Series. His many articles, essays and book chapters appear in a variety of places including Modern Judaism, Modern Language Studies, Religion and American Culture, Journal of Ecumenical Studies, Studies in American Jewish Literature, Saul Bellow Journal, Jewish Book Annual, Sociological Analysis, Australian Journal of Jewish Studies, Judaism, Literature and Belief, Shofar, and Encyclopedia of Genocide.  Additionally, he has written over fifty encyclopedia entries.  He was guest editor for two special issues of the journal Literature and Belief; “Holocaust Rescuers” to which he contributed an article, and “Elie Wiesel” in which he interviewed Wiesel. He also served as guest editor for a special issue of the Saul Bellow Journal: “Bellow and the Holocaust,” and for the Festschrift issue of Studies in American Jewish Literature honoring Dan Walden. Berger’s reviews have also appeared in leading Jewish periodicals including The Forward, Tikkun, Hadassah Magazine and Midstream.

He has lectured on the Holocaust, Jewish American Literature, Theology, and Christian/Jewish Relations throughout America and in Europe, Australia, South Africa, and Israel. Berger has also spoken at Yad Vashem and the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.  His classroom lecture on Art Spiegelman’s Maus was shown on C-Span (January, 2014).  He is editor of the series “Studies in Genocide: Religion, History and Human Rights” for Rowman and Littlefield.  Further, he is on the Senior Advisory Board of Studies in American Jewish Literature, and serves on the editorial boards of Literature and Belief and Journal of Ecumenical Studies.  He is on the  Readers Committee for The Elie Wiesel Prize in Ethics Essay Contest.  Berger is a Founding Associate Director of the Association for the Study of Jewish American and Holocaust Literature., Professor Berger was interviewed by Renee Montagne of National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition” in conjunction with the 60th Anniversary of the capture of Auschwitz by the Soviet Army.

Berger was awarded the Degree of Doctor of Letters Honoris Causa from Luther College in 1999.