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Thursday, October 29, 2009, 7:30 p.m., Emerson A. Dr. Gordon J. Horwitz will speak on "Ghettostadt: Łódź and the Making of a Nazi City."

Sponsored by the Jewish studies program, the lecture is free and open to the public.

Łódź, in Poland, was one of the first occupied cities to be annexed to the Third Reich, and the Nazis set about remaking it as a model German city. More than 200,000 Jews lived in Łódź, a third of the city’s residents. The Nazis confined the Jews of the city in a ghetto, which the Nazis sealed by May 1940. In his lecture, Horwitz will describe the efforts of the Germans to turn Łódź (renamed Litzmannstädt) into a perfect expression of German ideals while exploiting and destroying the Jewish populace, now hidden away behind barbed wire in crowded tenements. By the end of the war, almost all of the Jews of Łódź had been killed.

A professor of history at Illinois Wesleyan University, Horwitz specializes in modern European and German history. His research has focused on World War II and the Holocaust. In 1990 he published In the Shadow of Death: Living Outside the Gates of Mauthausen, a study of the way in which the civilian population surrounding an Austrian concentration camp related to the camp. 

For more information on the annual Holocaust Lecture, contact Rebecca Lesses, coordinator of Jewish studies, at or (607) 274-3556.

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