February 22, 2006
Holocaust Survivor, Psychologist to Lecture on Reconciliation
Holocaust survivor and nationally recognized psychologist, author and speaker Edith Eger, Ph.D., will present a personal and powerful message of reconciliation in two lectures at Whitworth College. Eger's March 9 lecture will focus on "Reconciling and Forgiveness" and her March 10 lecture will address "Reconciling with My Enemy."
Both lectures are open to the general public, but the March 10 lecture will be geared toward war veterans and active-duty military personnel. The lectures are free and will take place at 7 p.m. in the Robinson Teaching Theatre in Weyerhaeuser Hall at Whitworth. For more information, please call (509) 777-4739.
"Edith Eger offers a true model of reconciliation and forgiveness through her life story," says Whitworth Associate Professor of Communication Studies Ginny Whitehouse. "She has known evil and has made peace with pain. Instead of crumbling under the weight of memory, she has turned her Auschwitz experience into a vocation to help others heal."
Eger is visiting Spokane as part of Reconciliation Week, a series of events sponsored by the Murdock Lives of Commitment Program at Whitworth. Eger's March 10 lecture for veterans is co-sponsored by the U.S. Veterans Administration. In addition to her public lectures, Eger will share with Whitworth classes and Colville High School students her story of personal survival and growth. She will also speak to the Spokane City Forum and Colville Reconciliation Committee Forum.
Eger speaks on college campuses, at military bases and houses of worship, and to veterans' groups both in the United States and abroad. She desires in particular to speak with U.S. veterans and active military personnel, because Americans liberated her from Auschwitz.
A native of Hungary, Eger was 16 years old in 1944 when, as a Jew living in Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe, she and her family were sent to Auschwitz. Her parents died at the concentration camp; Eger and her sister survived even though they were subjected to Josef Mengele's medical experiments. Eger was near death when the United States Army liberated the camp in 1945. She was saved when an American soldier noticed her hand moving slightly as she lay among a number of dead bodies, and he summoned medical help.
Eger moved to the United States in 1949. She received her degree in psychology from the University of Texas, El Paso, in 1969. She then pursued her doctoral internship at the William Beaumont Army Medical Center, at Fort Bliss, Texas.
Eger maintains a clinical practice in La Jolla, Calif. and holds a faculty appointment at the University of California, San Diego. She is an author and a member of several professional associations, and has appeared on numerous television programs including the Oprah Winfrey Show. She was also the primary subject of a Holocaust documentary that appeared on Dutch National Television.
Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts college affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The college enrolls 2,400 students in more than 50 undergraduate and graduate programs.
Ginny Whitehouse, associate professor of communication studies, Whitworth College, (509) 777-4707 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Carla Lippert, Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, (509) 434-7503 or email@example.com.