James Young: The Stages of Memory

Virtual Program


Sunday, November 1, 2020
9 – 10 am

Salo W. Baron Program

In this lecture based on his most recent book, The Stages of Memory: Reflections on Memorial Art, Loss, and the Spaces Between, James Young traces what he calls an “arc of memorial vernacular” from Maya Lin’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial, to Germany’s Holocaust counter-monuments and Berlin’s Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, to the 9/11 Memorial in New York City. Held in in conjunction with the exhibition We Fight to Build a Free World: An Exhibition by Jonathan Horowitz, Young also includes reflections on his experiences as a juror for memorial competitions and a discussion of the way reflections on memorial art turn into practice.

This lecture will premiere on the Jewish Museum's YouTube channel.

The Salo W. Baron Program has been endowed by the Trustees of the Salo W. and Jeannette M. Baron Foundation

About the Speaker:

James Young is Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of English and Judaic & Near Eastern Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and Founding Director of the Institute for Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies at UMass Amherst. Young has also taught at New York University, Bryn Mawr College, the University of Washington, Harvard University, and Princeton University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California in 1983. Professor Young is the author of  a number of publications including: Writing and Rewriting the Holocaust (1988), The Texture of Memory (1993), which won the National Jewish Book Award in 1994, At Memory's Edge:  After-images of the Holocaust in Contemporary Art and Architecture (2000), and The Stages of Memory: Reflections on Memorial Art, Loss, and the Spaces Between (2016), which won the National Council on Public History Book Award for 2017. Professor Young is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, ACLS Fellowship, Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture Grants, among others. In 2000, he was appointed as Editor-in-Chief of The Posen Library of Jewish Culture and Civilization, a ten-volume anthology of primary sources, documents, texts, and images, forthcoming with Yale University Press (2012-2020).  At present, he is completing an insider’s story of the World Trade Center Memorial, entitled Memory at Ground Zero: A Jurors Report on the World Trade Center Site Memorial and Museum.