Join us for a conversation with Professor Sarah Abrevaya Stein and Alma Heckman as they discuss Professor Stein’s book Family Papers: a Conversation about a Sephardi Jewish Family, Lived History, and Personal Letters.
Stein will discuss her recent, award-winning book, Family Papers, which traces the story of the Levy family of Salonica through the arc of the 20th century and the breadth of the globe. Through this one family, across multiple generations, Stein offers a glimpse into the global history of Sephardic Jews marked by the end of empire, the Holocaust, and diaspora.
The Levys wrote to share grief and to reveal secrets, to propose marriage and to plan for divorce, to maintain connection. They wrote because they were family. And years after they frayed, Stein discovers, what remains solid is the fragile tissue that once held them together: neither blood nor belief, but papers. With meticulous research and care, Stein uses the Levys’ letters to tell not only their history, but the history of Sephardic Jews in the twentieth century.
This event is a part of The Humanities Insitute’s yearlong exploration of the theme Memory, we’ll ask: What can a family’s letters, photographs, and fragments tell us about the history of nations that don’t exist and families that have migrated to many continents? What is the relationship between individual memory, collective memory, and history?
Please join us for a thought-provoking conversation about lived history, memory, and family.