This spring, the Col­lege of Social Sci­ences and Human­i­ties at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity will host a lec­ture by Pulitzer Prize-​​winning author Art Spiegelman.

The lec­ture, co-​​sponsored by the Jewish Studies Pro­gram and the Human­i­ties Center at North­eastern, will take place on Tuesday, March 27, at 5:00 p.m.

Spiegelman – whose Morton E. Rud­erman Memo­rial Lec­ture is spon­sored by the Rud­erman family, including late alumnus Morton Rud­erman, COE, ’59, and his wife, Marcia, who made a gen­erous dona­tion to the uni­ver­sity – is both the artist and author of “Maus” and “Maus II,” the comic mas­ter­piece that cast Jews as mice and Ger­mans as cats.

Georges Van Den Abbeele, founding dean of the Col­lege of Social Sci­ences and Human­i­ties, played an inte­gral role in securing Spiegelman’s visit to campus.

Art Spiegelman is rec­og­nized inter­na­tion­ally for having trans­formed an entire genre with the pub­li­ca­tion of ‘Maus,’” said Van Den Abbeele. “Twenty five years later his graphic novel remains one of the most revered Holo­caust tales. We are thrilled to host such an esteemed lit­erary figure at Northeastern.”

I expect that the North­eastern com­mu­nity will be enriched with an appre­ci­a­tion for the com­plex legacy of the Holo­caust and how lit­er­a­ture has come to terms with the impos­si­bility of coming to terms with geno­cide,” said Jewish Studies pro­gram director Lori Lefkovitz.

Lefkovitz, who was named the inau­gural holder of the Rud­erman Pro­fessor of Jewish Studies in fall 2010, said the event con­tinues work to enrich the Jewish Studies pro­gram and engage the campus community.

Stu­dents can choose from dif­ferent pro­gram tracks, including a Jewish Studies minor and a com­bined major in Jewish Studies and religion.

Stu­dents who grad­uate with a minor in the pro­gram, which offers courses on a variety of topics including music, his­tory and lit­er­a­ture, are uniquely suited to suc­ceed in the work­place. As Lefkovitz puts it, “Having a broad and deep edu­ca­tion in what is per­haps the oldest global civ­i­liza­tion is a sign of being an inter­esting person.”

Lefkovitz is cur­rently working on building rela­tion­ships with Jewish agen­cies and com­mu­nity orga­ni­za­tions with the hope of cre­ating co-​​op oppor­tu­ni­ties for North­eastern students.

The pro­gram recently estab­lished two new schol­ar­ships. The Betty Brud­nick Schol­ar­ship will sup­port two $5,000 awards annu­ally for three years, and The Rud­erman Family Schol­ar­ship will sup­port a $5,000 annual award for five years.

We want to help stu­dents appre­ciate how Jewish Studies can enhance their edu­ca­tion and expose them to a tra­di­tion that is both pow­er­fully influ­en­tial and quite beau­tiful,” says Lefkovitz, who calls Jewish cul­ture “both ancient and ven­er­able, dynamic and adaptable.”

In 2010, Lefkovitz released the book “In Scrip­ture: The First Sto­ries of Jewish Sexual Iden­ti­ties,” which was named a finalist for that year’s National Jewish Book Award for exploring the Bib­lical ori­gins of a series of con­tem­po­rary atti­tudes toward Jewish men and women.

She plans to write her next book on the rep­re­sen­ta­tion of Jewish fathers in lit­er­a­ture. “My pas­sion for Jewish studies has to do with my love for its rich tex­tual tra­di­tion from the Bible through con­tem­po­rary lit­er­a­ture,” says Lefkovitz, who earned a Ph.D. in Eng­lish from Brown Uni­ver­sity. “The Jewish his­tor­ical expe­ri­ence is inspiring.”

In addi­tion to Spiegelman’s lec­ture, Van Den Abbeele noted the Col­lege of Social Sci­ences and Human­i­ties is com­mitted to wel­coming renowned fig­ures in the Human­i­ties to North­eastern. Dana Gioia, poet and former Chairman of the National Endow­ment for the Arts, will visit campus for three days begin­ning Feb. 13 and will give a poetry reading as the Spring 2012 Dean’s lec­ture series, “Encoun­tering the Human­i­ties,” on Wednesday, Feb. 15, at 7:00 p.m.

For more infor­ma­tion about either Gioia’s or Spiegelman’s visits to North­eastern, please con­tact the Human­i­ties Center at 617–373-4140 or visit North​eastern​.edu/​h​u​m​a​n​i​t​ies.