Submit Proposals for 2015-2016 Rutman Teaching Fellowship

Mon, 12/08/2014 - 5:00pm

USC Shoah Foundation – The Institute for Visual History and Education invites proposals for its 2015-16 Rutman Teaching Fellow program that will provide summer support for one member of the University of Pennsylvania faculty to integrate the Institute’s testimonies into a new or modified existing course. Fellowship is open to all disciplinary and methodological approaches. 

The Institute’s Visual History Archive holds over 53,000 video testimonies of survivors and other eyewitnesses of the Holocaust, Rwandan Tutsi Genocide, Nanjing Massacre, and the Armenian Genocide. The interviews were taken in 39 languages and in 61 countries. They encompass the experience not only of Jewish and Tutsi survivors, but also of others targeted by for death, as well as liberators, aid providers, and war crimes trials participants. As these interviews are life histories, their subject matter includes the history and culture of the countries of the interviewees’ birth and their lives before, during and after genocide. The interviews average 2 hours in length and offer a wealth of possibilities for integration into many disciplines’ coursework. More information about accessing the archive at Penn is available at

Proposals will be judged according to the centrality of the interviews to the course content. Preference will be given to classes that will be taught in the 2015-2016 academic year for existing courses and the 2016-2017 year for new course proposals.

Stipends will be awarded in the amount of $3,500. Rutman Teaching Fellows will also be invited to spend one week in Los Angeles over the spring/summer of 2015 to collaborate with USC Shoah Foundation staff and researchers. They will also be asked to present a lecture to the USC community about their research. Following the fellowship course, Rutman Teaching Fellows will present a lecture, hosted by the USC Shoah Foundation, at the University of Pennsylvania about their experience researching in the archive and using it in-class with their students. Final course syllabi will be posted to the Institute’s website and in a quarterly digest alongside a brief evaluation.

For any questions, or to submit an application, please contact the Institute’s Associate Director for Research, Dan Leshem, at

Proposals are due by Friday January 30, 2015. Awards will be announced mid-February.

The first-ever Rutman Teaching Fellow was 2014-2015 recipient Professor Harry Reicher, who developed and taught a course at Penn Law called Law and the Holocaust. The course examined the Nazi philosophy of law and how it was used to pervert Germany’s legal system in order to discriminate against, ostracize, dehumanize, and ultimately eliminate, certain classes of people; and to study the role of international law in rectifying the damage by bringing perpetrators to justice and constructing a legal system designed to prevent a repetition.

USC Shoah Foundation was saddened to learn of Professor Reicher's passing on Oct. 27, 2014. Read Stephen Smith's blog about his memories of Professor Reicher and their special connection that went back 20 years before they met in person earlier this year.

For further information about the USC Shoah Foundation, please consult the Institute website: