Berlin seminar:

Dr. Hadassah Stichnothe

Dr. Hadassah Stichnothe — Post-doctoral researcher at the department of philology and linguistics at Bremen University (Germany). Her research focuses on Jewish children’s literature during the Weimar Republic, novels of adolescence and initiation and uses theoretical approaches varying from Gender Studies, over translation studies to spatial theory. Her doctoral thesis dealing with German and English novels of initiation for children received the 2016 doctoral thesis award from Tübingen University and was published as Der Initiationsroman in der deutsch- und englischsprachigen Kinderliteratur (2017).

Among other topics, she has worked and written on “Jewishness” as a form of discursive disruption in German children’s literature, female Jewish adolescence in contemporary German novels and the depiction of violence and resistance in Jewish children’s literature on the Shoah (Violencia y resistencia en la literatura infantil y juvenil judía sobre la Shoah / Gewalt und Widerstand in jüdischer Kinder- und Jugendliteratur zur Shoah). She is also an editor at, an academic platform for children’s and young adults’ media.

Currently, she is conducting a post-doc research project on German Jewish children’s literature from 1945 to the present.

Israel seminar (online):

Dr. Tamar Meir

Dr. Tamar Meir is a Senior lecturer, holds degrees in Talmud and Jewish philosophy, and a PhD in literature from Bar-Ilan University.

She is the head of the Literature department in Givat Washington College and teaches Aggadah at Efrata College. She is an expert in Ancient Jewish literature (Midrash and Aggadah), Jewish poetry in the Middle Ages, Hasidic stories, and early childhood literary education.

Meir is the author of Naara Moaviya (Moabite Girl): on Halacha and Acceptance in Midrash Ruth-RabbaFrancesco Tirelli’s Ice Cream Store, Meir’s first children’s book, was awarded the Yad Vashem Prize (2017) and the Devorah Omer Prize for Children’s Literature (2017).

Dr. Naama Reshef

Dr. Naama Reshef received her PhD in philosophy from Bar Ilan University.

She is the head of the literature department, a teacher and a researcher at the Kaye Academic College of Education in Beer Sheva.

Reshef is researching various aspects of the concept of "identity" and focuses on literary texts as spaces for inquiring and structuring identity consciousness. Her latest article on the subject of identity, Inquiring and formatting Jewish identity consciousness in state schools, was published in volume 16 of Derech Efrata, 2021 (Hebrew).

Her current research project focuses on memory and postmemory of trauma in literary texts. Her article From Narrative Memory to Emotional Memory in Nava Semel's Book 'And the Rat Laughed’ was accepted for publication in a book on the subject of Postmemory, to be published by Routledge.

Dr. Smadar Falk-Peretz

Smadar Falk-Peretz, Ph.D., is a lecturer in the literature and English departments of David Yellin Academic College of Education and Orot Israel College of Education.

Smadar's fields of research are varied and include selected topics in Comparative Literature, Modern Hebrew Literature, and Israeli Children's Literature. 

She contributed most recently to the publication Jewish and Arab Childhood in Israel: Contemporary Perspectives (Lexington Books, 2021).

Smadar is member in the editorial boards of two Children's Literature journals: Sifrut Yeladim Vanoar: Journal of Children's and Youth Literature, (David Yellin College Publications) and Bein Hashurot (Between the Lines): Journal of Research and Creation in Children’s Literature, Shaanan Publications.

Lublin seminar:

Dr. Małgorzata Wójcik-Dudek

Dr. Małgorzata Wójcik-Dudek - Assistant professor at the Faculty of the Humanities, Silesian University in Katowice, Poland. Her research focuses on the teaching of Polish literature at the level of primary and secondary school, on literature for children and young adults and on cultural representations of the past in the Polish educational system. She has authored several articles and two monographs: (Prze)Trwać w okolicach mitu. Funkcje mityzacji w poezji Tadeusza Nowaka (2007) and W(y)czytać Zagładę. Praktyki postpamięci w polskiej literaturze XXI wieku dla dzieci i młodzieży (2016) (English edition: Reading (in) the Holocaust. Practices of Postmemory in Recent Polish Literature for Children and Young Adults; Berlin 2020).

Prof. dr hab. Przemysław Czapliński

Photo by Maciej Zakrzewski

Photo by Maciej Zakrzewski

Prof. dr hab. Przemysław Czapliński – one of the most important Polish literary critics, literary historian, full professor, works at the Institute of Polish Philology at the University of Adam Mickiewicz in Poznań.

He has received many important awards, incl. the Ludwik Fryde Award, awarded by the International Association of Literary Criticism, the Literary Award of the Kościelski Foundation, the Prime Minister Award, the Kazimierz Wyka Award, the Medal of Merit for Culture Gloria Artis awarded by the Minister of Culture and National Heritage, the Jan Długosz Award, the Award of the Marshal of Wielkopolska in the field of artistic creation, dissemination and protection of cultural goods, the award of the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages ​​awarded to the best edited multi-author scientific book (AATSEEL Annual Award for the Best Edited Multi-Author Scholarly Volume) for Being Poland: A New History of Polish Literature and Culture since 1918, edited by Tamara Trojanowska, Joanna Niżyńska, and Przemysław Czapliński, with the assistance of Agnieszka Polakowska (University of Toronto Press, 2018).

He is the author of many important works in the field of Polish literary studies. These are i.a. Ślady przełomu. O prozie polskiej 1976–1996 (1997), Wzniosłe tęsknoty. Nostalgia w prozie lat dziewięćdziesiątych (2001), Ruchome marginesy: szkice o literaturze lat 90 (2002), Świat podrobiony. Krytyka i literatura wobec nowej rzeczywistości (2003), Powrót centrali. Literatura w nowej rzeczywistości (2007), Polska do wymiany. Późna nowoczesność i nasze wielkie narracje (2009), Resztki nowoczesności. Dwa studia o literaturze i życiu (2011), The Remnants of Modernity. Two Essays on Sarmatism and Utopia in Polish Contemporary Literature (2015) and Poruszona mapa (2016). ​

He writes about the Holocaust, Polish-Jewish relations and their literary representations. He co-edited (with Ewa Domańska) Zagłada. Współczesne problemy rozumienia i przedstawiania (Holocaust. Contemporary problems of understanding and representation) in 2009, and (with Alina Molisak) Tożsamość po pogromie. Świadectwa i interpretacje Marca '68 (Identity after the pogrom. Testimonies and interpretations of March '68) in 2019.

Belgium seminar (online):

Prof. dr. Vanessa Joosen

Vanessa Joosen is associate professor of English literature and children's literature studies at the University of Antwerp, where she also organises the Children’s Literature Summer School. In 2019, Joosen set up the project "Constructing Age for Young Readers," for which she received an ERC Starting Grant. Joosen is the author of, amongst others, Critical and Creative Perspectives on Fairy Tales (Wayne State UP, Choice Award for Outstanding Academic Publication) and Adulthood in Children’s Literature (Bloomsbury), and has (co-)edited the volumes Grimms’ Tales Around the Globe (Wayne State UP, CHLA Honour Award for Edited Book) and Connecting Childhood and Old Age in Popular Media (University of Mississippi Press).

Dr. Bettine Siertsema

Bettine Siertsema is assistent professor of History at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. She specializes in Holocaust literature and testimony. In English she published articles on Etty Hillesum, diaries and fiction on hiding, female Holocaust perpetrators, the “grey zone” in memoirs and fiction, and on video testimonies by Amsterdam’s diamond Jews. She co-edited See under: Shoah. Imagining the Holocaust with David Grossman (Brill, 2014).

In Dutch she published books on the religious views in diaries and memoirs on the concentration camps (Uit de diepten, 2007), on early testimonial literature of the Holocaust (Eerste Nederlandse getuigenissen van de Holocaust 1945-1946, 2018) and on the lives of a group of Jewish diamond workers and their families during the war (Diamantkinderen, 2020), which will appear in English in 2022. Her essays on Holocaust literature are collected in Verhalen van kwaad (2018).