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Amram Scholar Series

This dynamic program of free public lectures brings world-renowned authors, scholars, political leaders, policy experts, and theologians to WHC to share their perspectives on timely issues or their research into Jewish culture and history.

We are pleased to present prominent writers of the nation's newest works on topics of Jewish interest, often in cooperation with the Jewish Book Council.

Howard Blum

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The Amram Scholar Series partners with WHC Sisterhood to present its closing lecture for the 2016-2017 season: the riveting story of Betty Pack, a beautiful American debutante who became one of World War II’s most successful Allied spies.

Join us at Temple on Wednesday, June 14, when bestselling author Howard Blum, a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and a former New York Times investigative reporter, discusses Pack’s exploits detailed in his latest book, The Last Goodnight: A World War II Story of Espionage, Adventure, and Betrayal. His lecture, which begins at 7:00 pm, will be preceded by a wine-and-cheese reception at 6:30 pm.

Hailed by General “Wild Bill” Donovan, head of wartime intelligence, as “the greatest unsung heroine of the war,” Betty Pack engaged in death-defying missions vital to the Allied victory, first as a secret agent for Britain’s MI-6 and then for Donovan’s Office of Strategic Services. Code-named “Cynthia,” the intelligent and charming spy seduced diplomats and military attachés across the globe in exchange for critically important ciphers and secrets involving Nazi Germany, Vichy France, and Fascist Italy.

Delving into recently declassified wartime files, Mr. Blum created a mesmerizing portrait of a complex woman. Pack’s passion and courage were conflicted by the very traits that led to her effectiveness: a lack of deep emotional connections and her readiness to risk everything to help the Allied cause.

Click here to register to join us for this event.

This program is presented in cooperation with the Jewish Book Council and with support from the Abraham & Freida Hochberg Creative Cultural Fund.

Support WHC's youth social justice projects by purchasing this book through the WHC Mitzvah Mall.

2016-2017 Amram Scholar Series Schedule

Unless specified, all lectures are held at Temple on Sundays at 10:30 am.

Thursday, September 22 at 6:30 pm
Germans & Jews, Documentary and Reception Hosted by the German Embassy

Friday, October 28 at 6:00 pm (during Shabbat services)
Cornell William Brooks, "Moral Necessity or Nostalgia: The Jewish & Black Coalition of Conscience"

Friday, November 11 at 7:00 pm (at dinner after Shabbat services)
Adam Kirsch, author of The People and the Books: 18 Classics of Jewish Literature

Sunday, December 11
Rabbi Ben Kamin, author of I Don't Know What to Believe: Making Spiritual Peace with Your Religion

Sunday, January 22
David Kinney, author of The Devil's Diary: Alfred Rosenberg and the Stolen Secrets

Sunday, February 26
Dov Waxman, author of Trouble in the Tribe: The American Jewish Conflict Over Israel

Sunday, March 19
Maya Benton, author of Roman Vishniac Rediscovered

Sunday, April 2
Lawrence Douglas and Andrew Nagorski, "Bringing Nazis to Justice"

Wednesday, June 14 at 7:00 pm
Howard Blum, author of The Last Goodnight: A World War II Story of Espionage, Adventure, and Betrayal

Past Lectures

The work and career of the renowned social documentary photographer Roman Vishniac, best known for iconic images of Jewish life in Eastern Europe before the Holocaust, was explored on Sunday, March 19, 2017 through an illustrated lecture presented by Maya Benton, curator of the International Center of Photography in New York City, founder of the Center’s Roman Vishniac Archive and editor of Roman Vishniac Rediscovered, a beautifully printed volume of essays and photographs.

Upcoming Events

June 14, 2017 / Wednesday
Amram Scholar Series Presents Howard Blum
7:00 PM—8:30 PM

The Amram Scholar Series partners with WHC Sisterhood to present its closing lecture for the 2016-2017 season: the riveting story of Betty Pack, a beautiful American debutante who became one…

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