YPSILANTI – Martin B. Shichtman, a professor of English and Literature and Director of the Center for Jewish Studies at Eastern Michigan University, will deliver the keynote address at the 2019 Official State of Michigan Holocaust Commemoration, in the rotunda of the State Capitol in Lansing from noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday, April 23.
Shichtman will speak to a crowd that will include Governor Gretchen Whitmer, along with Michigan legislators and state officials, Holocaust survivors, and members of the public. The topic for his address is, “How Does America Respond Now?”
The annual commemoration will also include remarks by Governor Whitmer, a legislative resolution, introduction of survivors, and a candle lighting ceremony.
“Being chosen to deliver this address is a deeply humbling experience,” says Shichtman; “I hope my words are worthy of those who died, those who survived, and those who are gathered to make certain that we never forget.”
Shichtman notes that it is important, especially in these turbulent times, that State of Michigan officials recognize the significance of the Holocaust to our understandings of ourselves as Americans.
Shichtman, who has taught at Eastern Michigan for 34 years, has been director of Jewish studies for the University since 2010. The EMU Center for Jewish Studies was created in 2016.
He has been an active figure in the academic life of the University, organizing numerous EMU campus discussions and panels that stimulate conversation and cultural awareness and empathy.
Shichtman earned his doctorate and master's from the University of Iowa, and his bachelor's from the State University of New York, Binghamton. He has taught more than a dozen courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels at Eastern, including classes on Chaucer, Arthurian literature and Jewish American literature. Classes focusing on Jewish life include "Imagining the Holy Land," and "Culture and the Holocaust."
He has written four books. The latest, "Cinematic Illusions: The Middle Ages on Film," co-authored with Laurie Finke, received Eastern's annual Faculty Scholarship Recognition Award for best book by a faculty member.
Shichtman also received the EMU Distinguished Faculty Award for Teaching in 1996, and the EMU Alumni Association Award for Teaching Excellence in 1993.
About Eastern Michigan University
Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 18,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Health and Human Services; Technology, and its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website.