David Patterson

Hillel A. Feinberg Chair in Holocaust Studies
Professor of Literature and History

Professional Preparation

Ph.D. - Comparative Literature
University of Oregon - 1978
M.A. - Comparative Literature
University of Oregon - 1976
B.A. - Philosophy
University of Oregon - 1972

Research Areas

Areas of Specialization
Holocaust, anti-Semtism, Jewish literature, Jewish history, modern Jewish thought


Bomblum Chair/Director
University of Memphis [1998–Present]
Distinguished Professor of Russian Literature and Director of the University Honors Program
University of Memphis [1996–1998]
Assoc. Prof. of Russian and European Literature
Oklahoma State [1993–1993]
Professor of Russian and European Literature
Oklahoma State [1993–1996]
Sutton Chair in the Humanities
University of Oklahoma [1992–1993]
Director/Associate Professor of Russian and European Literature
Oklahoma State [1990–1992]
Associate Professor of Russian and European Literature
Oklahoma State [1989–1990]
Assistant Professor of Russian
Oklahoma State [1985–1989]
Visiting Assistant Professor of Russian and Philosophy and Assistant to the Dean
Oklahoma State [1984–1985]
Adjunct Assistant Professor of English and Assistant to the Dean
Oklahoma State [1984–1984]

Additional Information

  • Grant evaluator for the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada
  • Co-Editor-in-Chief, Weinstein Series in Post-Holocaust Studies, Univ of Washington Press
  • Member of the Scholars’ Platform, Beth Shalom Holocaust Centre, Cambridge, England
  • Member of the Weinstein Holocaust Symposium, Wroxton, England
  • Member of the Advisory Committee for the Intemational Scholars’ Conferences
  • Consultant for the Philadelphia Center on Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights
  • Member of Readers’ Committee for the Elie Wiesel Essay on Ethics Award
  • Facing History and Ourselves Scholar in Residence
  • Editorial Board for the Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty
  • Grant reviewer for National Endowment for the Humanities
  • Reader for: Palgrave Macmillan; University of Tennessee Press, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers; Wayne State University Press; University of Missouri Press; Syracuse University Press; Central European University Press, Budapest, Hungary; University of Washington Press; St. Martin’s Press; University Press of Virginia; University Press of Kentucky; The Russian Review; PMLA; Holocaust and Genocide Studies; Christianity and Literature; Mosaic: A Journal for the Interdisciplinary Study of Literature; Signs; Shofar; Religion and Literature, Southern Jewish History; Associate Editor of Russian, South Central Review
  • 2008
    • Recipient of the Hadassah Myrtle Wreath Award
    • Selected as Scholar-in—Residence for the American Library Association Let ’s Talk About It program, University of Memphis
  • 2007
    • Appointed to the Facing History International Scholars Board of Advisors
  • 2006
    • Appointed to the Board of Directors for the Tennessee Holocaust Commission
  • 2005
    • Appointed to Hadassah’s Academic Advisory Board and Curriculum Watch
    • Distinguished Teaching Award Nominee
  • 2004
    • Awarded Arts and Sciences Research Grant for work on Open Wounds
    • University College Advising Award
  • 2003
    • ALA Award for Outstanding Reference Source 2003 for Encyclopedia of Holocaust Literature
    • University College Distinguished Faculty Award
  • 2002
    • Invited to Membership in The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi
    • Booklist Editors’ Choice Award 2002 for Encyclopedia of Holocaust Literature
  • 2000
    • Winner of the Koach Award for Adult Education, Beth Sholom Synagogue
    • Winner of the Koret Jewish Book Award for Jewish Thought and Philosophy (for Along the Edge of Annihilation)
  • 1999
    • Selected by the Warren Center and the Tennessee Holocaust Commission for the Colloquium on the Holocaust, Vanderbilt University
  • 1997
    • Awarded Arts and Sciences Research Grant for work on The Black Book
    • Named honorary member of Alpha Lambda Delta National Honors Society
    • Named honorary member of the Golden Key Honor Society
    • Selected as Honored Member of Strathrnore’s Who’s Who Registry
  • 1996
    • Awarded College of Arts and Sciences Certificate of Faculty Excellence
    • Selected as a Fellow of the Institute on the Holocaust and Jewish Civilization, Northwestern University
    • In Choice the American Library Association named Exile as one of the best academic books of 1995
    • Appointed to Resource Advisory Panel for Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs
    • Awarded Oklahoma Foundation for the Humanities Research Grant for From Kant to the Camps: German Philosophy and the Holocaust
  • 1995
    • Selected as Russell Kirk Lecturer, "The Permanent Things," Heritage Foundation
    • Selected as NEH Visiting Scholar, Southern Oregon State College
    • Selected as Pepperdine University Guest Professor
  • 1994
    • Awarded the Southem Books Competition Award of Excellence, 1992-1993, for The Gospel According to Tolstoy
    • Awarded Oklahoma Foundation for the Humanities Research Grant for Along the Edge of Annihilation: The Collapse and Recovery of LW in the Holocaust Diary
    • Awarded So. Central MLA Research Grant for Along the Edge of Annihilation
    • Awarded NEH Summer Stipend for Along the Edge of Annihilation
    • Awarded A&S Research Grant for work on Holocaust in Berlin
  • 1992
    • Awarded NEH Grant for research in Israel on Sun Turned to Darkness: Memory and Recovery in the Holocaust Memoir
    • Awarded Oklahoma Foundation for the Humanities Research Grant for Sun Turned to Darkness
  • 1991
    • Selected for inclusion in Who 's Who in Foreign Criticism on Russian Literature (Moscow: 1nstitutMirovoi Literatury, 1992)
  • 1990
    • Awarded Arts and Sciences Board of Faculty Award for Excellence in Scholarship
    • American Council of Leamed Societies Grant for travel to Cambridge, England
    • Southwestem Bell Faculty Fellowship Award for The Shriek of Silence: A Phenomenology ofthe Holocaust Novel
    • Awarded University of Oregon Arts and Sciences Alumni Achievement Award
  • 1989
    • Awarded Burlington Northern Achievement Award for Scholarship and Teaching
    • In Choice the American Library Association named The Ajjirming Flame as one of the best academic books of 1988
    • Appointed Honor Lecturer for Mid—America State Universities Association
  • 1988
    • Finalist for Fred Jones Foundation Outstanding Teacher Award
    • Grant from Pergamon Press to participate in the Intemational Conference "Remembering for the Future," 10-13 July 1988, Oxford and London
  • 1987
    • First Runner-up for 1987 M/MLA Book Award for Literature and Spirit
  • 1986
    • Research Grant from South Central Modem Language Assoc. for study in Geneva
  • 1984
    • NEH Summer Seminar Grant for study at Harvard University
  • Oklahoma State University
    • Departmental Advisor
    • Graduate Faculty Nomination Committee
    • Departmental Personnel Committee (Chair)
    • Departmental Curriculum Committee
    • College General Education Committee
    • Honors Thesis Advisor
    • Program Review Committee
    • Faculty Representatives Award Committee (Chair)
    • Departmental Grants Coordinator
    • A&S Curriculum Committee
    • Treasurer, Oklahoma Association of Scholars
    • Coordinator for Scholar-Leadership Enrichment Program
    • Coordinator of Russian Section
    • Co-Director of Workshop on Cultural and Linguistic Differences
    • A&S Humanities Endowed Professorship Committee
    • University Scholarship Committee for Study Abroad
    • NEH Stipend Committee
    • Scholarly Excellence Award Committee
    • Departmental Policy Handbook Committee (Chair)
    • Arts and Sciences Promotion and Tenure Committee
    • Russian Club Advisor
  • The University of Memphis
    • CAS Host for Great Conversations
    • CAS Humanities Representative to the University Council
    • University Council for Graduate Studies
    • College of Arts and Sciences Tenure and Promotion Committee
    • Chair of the Sociology Department Chair Search Committee
    • Chair of the English Department Chair Evaluation Committee
    • CAS Communication Group
    • A&S Dean’s Advisory Council
    • Scholarships Coordinator Search Committee (Chair)
    • Recruitment Task Force Committee
    • Who’s Who Committee
    • Student Research Symposium Judge
    • Israel at 50 Committee (Co—Chair)
    • Search Committee for Executive Director of International Programs
    • Orr Humanities Center Planning Committee
    • University College Special Projects Award Committee
    • Enrollment Management Council Retention Committee
    • Jewish Student Union Faculty Advisor
    • President’s Task Force on Academic Excellence and Character Development
    • General Education Committee
    • University College Faculty Council
    • Project Unity Planning Committee
    • Chair, Bomblum Judaic Studies Faculty Advisory Council
    • RiverPac Faculty Advisor
    • Faculty Senate
    • University Undergraduate Curriculum Committee
    • Marcus Orr Lecture Series Committee
    • Alma Bucovaz Urban Service Award Selection Committee
    • Co-Director, Orr Humanities Center’s Great Books Seminars
  • Professional and Community Activity
    • Consultant to the Philadelphia Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies
    • Member of the Weinstein Symposium on the Holocaust
    • Advisory Board for the Annual Scholars' Conference on the Holocaust
    • Scholars’ Platform for the Beth Shalom Holocaust Centre, Cambridge, England
    • Co-Editor-in-Chief for the U of Washington Weinstein Series in Post-Holocaust Studies (
    • Facing History Intemational Board of Scholars
    • Memphis Holocaust Memorial Committee
    • Tennessee Holocaust Commission Board of Directors
    • Belz Museum Board
    • Consultant for the Belz Museum Judaica Collection
    • Memphis Holocaust Center Planning Committee
    • Jewish Historical Society Board Member
    • Biblical Life Center Advisory Board
    • Jewish Culture Experience Committee
    • Association for Jewish Studies Membership Committee
    • Beth Sholom Synagogue Board
    • Bomblum Solomon Schechter School Board
    • Chair of Adult Education Committee, Beth Sholom Synagogue
    • College Israel Recruitment Committee
    • Governor’s Tennessee-Israel Cooperation Committee
    • Annual Scholars’ Conference on the Holocaust Advisory Board
    • Jewish Student Union Board
    • B’nai B’rith Board
    • Jewish Book Festival Committee
    • Vice President for Programming, Jewish Historical Society
    • Yom HaShoah Committee, Memphis Jewish Federation
    • Southem Jewish Historical Society Editorial Board
    • Southern Jewish Historical Society Bomblum Award Committee
    • President of the Memphis Jewish Historical Society