Michael Berenbaum - Historian

Michael Berenbaum is a writer, lecturer, and teacher consulting in the conceptual development of museums and the historical development of films. He is also director of the Sigi Ziering Institute: Exploring the Ethical and Religious Implications of the Holocaust and a Professor of Jewish Studies at the American Jewish University Los Angeles. In the past, he has served as the Ida E. King Distinguished Professor of Holocaust Studies at Richard Stockton College for 1999-2000 and the Strassler Family Distinguished Visiting Professor of Holocaust Studies at Clark University in 2000. For the prior three years, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation. He was the Project Director overseeing the creation of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and later served as Director of its Research Institute and the Hymen Goldman Adjunct Professor of Theology at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C and. Berenbaum is the author and editor of twenty books, scores of scholarly articles and hundreds of journalistic pieces.

Among his works are A Promise to Remember: The Holocaust in the Words and Voices of Its Survivors, After Tragedy and Triumph, The World Must Know, Anatomy of the Auschwitz Death Camp with, " A Mosaic of Victims: Non Jews Persecuted and Murdered by the Nazis, The Vision of the Void: Theological Reflections on the Works of Elie Wiesel, and Witness to the Holocaust: An Illustrated Documentary History of the Holocaust in the Words of Its Victims, Perpetrators, and Bystanders. He was co-editor on several works, including The Holocaust: Religious and Philosophical Implications (with John Roth), The Holocaust and History: The Known, the Unknown, the Disputed and the Reexamined (with Abraham Peck), and most recently, The Bombing of Auschwitz: Should the Allies Have Attempted It? (with Michael Neufeld). He was Executive Editor of the Second Edition of the Encyclopaedia Judaica, a 22 volume, 16 million word project that was awarded the Dartmouth Medal by the American Library Association as the outstanding reference work of 2007.

In film, his work as Co-Producer of One Survivor Remembers: The Gerda Weissman Klein Story was recognized with an Academy Award, an Emmy Award and the Cable Ace Award. He was the historical consultant on The Shoah Foundation’s Documentary, The Last Days, which won an Academy Award for the best feature length documentary of 1998. \

Over the past several years, Berenbaum was a historical consultant or chief historical consultant for

  • HBO’s Conspiracy, which won 2 Emmy awards
  • NBC’s Uprising
  • The History Channel’s The Holocaust: The Untold Story, which won the CINE Golden Eagle Award and a Silver Medal at the US International Film and Video Festival
  • Historical Consultant, A Yiddish World Remembered, PBS 2002 Winner Emmy Award, 2002
  • Consultant and interviewee, “Reinhard Heydrich, The Face of Evil.”
  • Consultant to “Hitler: The Rise of Evil,” the CBS Mini-Series.
  • Interviewee, “About Face,” a film about American Jewish Soldiers of German origin who returned home to fight against Germany
  • Consultant and Interviewee, “Imaginary Witnesses: Hollywood and the Holocaust,” A film on how the Holocaust was treated in American Films, to be broadcast on BBC in England and AMC in U.S
  • Executive producer, writer and historian for Desperate Hours on the Holocaust in Turkey
  • Interviewee and consultant for a three part series on National Geographic
  • Executive Producer of a PBS film on Treblinka
  • Empty Boxcarson the rescue of Bulgarian Jews but only after the Bulgarians had deported the Jews of Thrace and Macedonia to Treblinka
  • Swimming in Auschwitz, the story of six women survivors of Auschwitz that was broadcast on PBS.

He was the executive producer, writer, and historian for a film entitled Desperate Hours on the Holocaust in Turkey, which was broadcast on Public Television is a consultant and interviewee on several broadcasts, most recently, Imaginary Witness: Hollywood and the Holocaust, which was broadcast on the BBC in England and on AMC in the United States. He also was the commentator for the National Geographic’s Master’s of Death and Scrapbook from Hell, and Engineering Evil three documentaries, the first on the Einsatzgruppen, the Mobile Killing Units, the second on the Auschwitz album of the perpetrators and the third an overall view of structure of the Holocaust. A new film The Last Survivor of Treblinka, will be broadcast on PBS in the fall of 2013. Berenbaum is often interviewed by filmmakers throughout the world and a featured guest on Television and Radio broadcasts. -