Organizers & Chairs

Organizers

Foto: Barak Shrama

Robin Buller is a Tandem Postdoctoral Fellow in the History of Migration at the Pacific Office of the German Historical Institute Washington and a Visiting Scholar at University of California Berkeley’s Institute for European Studies. She received her PhD in History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and was previously a dissertation fellow with the Association for Jewish Studies and a Saul Kagan Fellow in Advanced Shoah Studies with the Claims Conference. Dr. Buller has published articles in Yad Vashem Studies and Jewish Social Studies (forthcoming), and is also a podcast host for New Books in Jewish Studies as well as the review editor for H-Judaic.

Wolf Gruner is the Shapell-Guerin Chair in Jewish Studies and professor of history at the University of Southern California (USC). In 2014, he became the founding director of the USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research. He is a specialist in German-Jewish history, Holocaust and comparative genocide studies, topics on which he authored ten books and over 70 articles and book chapters. His most recent publication is the prizewinning “Holocaust in Bohemia and Moravia. Czech Initiatives, German Policies and Jewish responses” (2019). He just finished a book manuscript “’Impudent Jews’. Forgotten stories of individual Jewish resistance in Hitler’s Germany”. He also coedited four volumes, including “Resisting Persecution. Jews and their Petitions during the Holocaust (2020)

Foto: Barak Shrama

Anne-Christin Klotz is a Tandem Postdoctoral Fellow in the History of Migration at the Pacific Office of the German Historical Institute Washington and a Visiting Scholar at University of California Berkeley’s Institute for European Studies. Her dissertation on the Warsaw Yiddish press and the struggle of its journalists against the persecution of Jews in Nazi Germany (1930–1941) will be published in 2022 with De Gruyter. She received her PhD in Modern History from the Free University Berlin in 2021 and has worked as a research assistant at the Selma-Stern-Centre for Jewish Studies Berlin-Brandenburg and the 16 volume document collection “The Persecution and Murder of the European Jews by Nazi Germany, 1933-1945” at the Institute for Contemporary History Munich – Berlin, Germany. Before her doctoral studies she volunteered at the educational department at the Holocaust memorial site Stutthof (Sztutowo, Poland). For her research she was awarded numerous scholarships and grants like the Saul Kagan Fellowship in Advanced Holocaust Studies by the Jewish Claims Conference and scholarships by Yad Vashem and the German Historical Institute Warsaw.

Chairs

Sarah Ernst (they/them) is a first-year student at the University of Southern California advised by Wolf Gruner. Their research interests include the Holocaust and Modern Europe, with a focus on queer history. Sarah received their B.A. in History and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies in 2020 from Brandeis University. While there, they completed a Senior Honors Thesis under the supervision of Dr. Hannah Weiss Muller entitled, “You Mean Something Absolutely Vital to Me”: An Insight into the Lived Experiences of Female Companions to Hysterics in England in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries.” This research looked at hysteria and the personal and social impacts of it for women in non-heteronormative relationships.

Paul Lerner is Professor of History at USC where he directs the Max Kade Institute for Austrian-German-Swiss Studies. Lerner has written Hysterical Men: War, Psychiatry, and the Politics of Trauma in Germany (Cornell) and The Consuming Temple: Jews, Department Stores, and the Consumer Revolution in Germany (Cornell) and has co-edited books on trauma in the history of psychiatry, German Jewish masculinities, Lion Feuchtwanger’s Jewishness, and Jewish consumer cultures. He is currently working on “Exiles on Main Street: Central European Émigrés, American Households, and Cold War Capitalism” among other projects on German-speaking émigrés, consumer culture, and the history of human science.

Alexia M. Orengo Green is a PhD History student at the University of Southern California (USC). She is interested in researching the Holocaust with a focus on children, emotions, memory, and identity. In 2021 Alexia graduated from New York University (NYU) with an M.A. in Archives and Public History. While at NYU, she co-taught the history practicum section of “Asylum in Crisis.” Alexia’s capstone project, “A New Look at Teaching the Holocaust: A Teacher’s Guide to Expanding the Holocaust Narrative Beyond Anne Frank,” provides resources and easy modifications teachers can apply in their lesson plans. The guide aims to expand the Holocaust narrative through the historical context on antisemitism, the modern state, victims, and the events that followed.

Foto: Barak Shrama

Sören Urbansky  is a historian of Russia and China in the modern era, specializing in imperial and racial entanglements, migration, infrastructure, and the history of borders. He is the head of the Pacific Regional Office of the German Historical Institute Washington at UC Berkeley. Sören is the author of three monographs, including Beyond the Steppe Frontier: A History of the Sino-Russian Border (2020).

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