Founded in 1925 in Berlin and Wilno, Poland (now Vilnius, Lithuania) YIVO, or the Yiddish Scientific Institute, became the leading institution for scholarship in Yiddish, moving its HQ to New York in 1940.
YIVO CEO and historian Jonathan Brent discusses with Philippe Sands the importance of the Institute for Jewish Research’s discovery, preservation and digitisation of millions of pages of documents and books, spanning over 500 hundred years of Jewish life. What do these materials teach us? Why is this important today? How can these materials affect the Jewish future?
This event will last approximately 1 hour, without an interval.
Jonathan Brent was editorial director of Yale University Press (1991-2009) where he established the Annals of Communism series in 1992. His books include Stalin’s Last Crime (2003); and Inside the Stalin Archives (2008). He teaches history and literature at Bard College.
Brent became Executive Director and CEO of The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research In 2009 and initiated The Edward Blank YIVO Vilna Online Collections Project in 2014 which digitized YIVO’s pre-WW II collections in New York City and Vilnius, Lithuania. In 2019 Brent received the Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania.
Philippe Sands is Professor of Law at UCL and a practising barrister at Matrix Chambers. He has been involved in many of the most important international cases of recent years, including Pinochet, Congo, Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Iraq, Guantanamo and the Rohingya. He is the author of Lawless World, Torture Team, East West Street, which won the Baillie Gifford Prize for Non-fiction, and Sunday Times bestselling The Ratline. He is a contributor to the Financial Times, The Guardian, New York Review of Books and Vanity Fair, and makes regular appearances on radio and television. He is also President of English PEN and a member of the board of the Hay Festival.