April, 27-28 Zaporizhzhya Jewish Readings 2012, a traditional open All-Ukrainian Scientific and Practice Conference is currently held at Zaporizhzhya National University. The event is organised by ZNU and All-Ukrainian Centre for Holocaust Studies ‘Tkuma’ (‘Revival’). The readings gathered together professors-historians, linguists and philosophers across the pace-setting national higher education institutions, school teachers and everyone engaged with the subject
This year scientific event is of special importance, as these are the 25th Jewish Readings. On behalf of Lviv citizens, who have attended the conference since its foundation, congratulations were delivered by Oleksandra Mestetska, head of Cultural Sector of Charitable Jewish Organisation “Bnei Brit Leopolis” (Lviv). Apart of Zaporizhzhya scholars the conference is visited by colleagues from Kyiv, Dnipropetrovsk, Irpin, Simferopil, Mykolayiv, Donetsk, Lviv and Chernigiv.
The readings emerged following the conference on “Jews of South Ukraine: the Past and Present Day”, which was held at the Faculty of History (ZNU). The readings have been organised by Department of Modern History of Ukraine (ZNU) Prof. Fedir Turchenko and Assoc. Prof. Semen Orlianskyi, along with event organiser and moderator - All-Ukrainian Centre for Holocaust Studies “Tkuma” director, Ph.D. in History Igor Schupak, a ZNU graduate.
According to Igor Schupak, major subject of the readings is on Jews of Ukraine in the framework of World History. Among the key areas of interest were biblical stories interwoven in classical and modern literature and inter-national relations, in particular in the wartime. Under scrutiny was the history of Holocaust, including studies of activities undertaken by the Righteous among the nations of the world –Ukrainians, Russians and Byelorussians who, risking their lives have been saving Jews during the 2nd World War. At the plenary session Semen Orlianskyi expressed his gratitude for cooperation to the Department of Literature and Journalism Theory head, Prof. Vitaliy Shevchenko and Department of Russian Philology, Prof. Iryna Pavlenko, due to their efforts linguistic subjects were largely represented at the conference.
Also, Semen Orlianskyi expressed his hope that philosophers will further show active involvement in the event, as the key idea, developed by its organisers, lies in finding out new outlook on crucial issues at the meeting-point of humanitarian sciences.
After plenary session the conference continued with three theme group sessions in the following areas: History, Culture and Linguistics. The first day of Jewish Readings will finish with round table discussion on “Problematic issues of Historiography of Holocaust History”.
On April, 28 the conference attendees will have pedagogical workshop on “Problems in teaching history of the Second World War and Holocaust”, previewed for secondary school teachers. At the plenary session the researchers will not only sum up the results of theme groups’ debates but also listen to report on ‘Tkuma’ Centre publications in 2011/2012 and scientific and teaching activities programme for 2012.