Ellis Named University Professor

April 26, 1999

Dr. Marc Ellis, a noted expert on contemporary Judaism and the Holocaust, has been named University Professor of American and Jewish Studies at Baylor University, effective June 1. Ellis, who came to Baylor last year from Harvard University where he served as a visiting scholar, currently is teaching a class on the Holocaust and a graduate seminar on Liberation Theology for the J.M. Dawson Institute of Church-State Studies.

"I am extremely pleased that Marc Ellis is at Baylor and now will be a University Professor," said Dr. Donald Schmeltekopf, provost and vice president for academic affairs. "He will bring a truly special dimension to our academic program, and he also brings great visibility and credibility as a scholar of American Jewish studies. He will make a great contribution to Baylor and the Waco community, and I look forward to many years of wonderful association."

"It is very important and meaningful to me to be brought to Baylor in this capacity," said Ellis. "My experience at Baylor has been one of welcome and respect, and I'm delighted to join the faculty and a school with a religious and Christian vision. It is very meaningful to me as a Jew to be accepted in this way, and I look forward to many years of being part of Baylor."

Ellis earned his bachelor's and master's degrees from Florida State University where he studied with Jewish Holocaust theologian Richard Rubenstein. After working with the Catholic Worker Movement in New York City for one year, he entered Marquette University and received his doctorate in contemporary intellectual and religious history in 1980.

Upon completing his doctorate, Ellis founded the master's program in justice and peace studies at New York's Maryknoll School of Theology in 1980 and was coordinator of the

program until 1995. He has served as visiting professor of religion at Florida State and as senior fellow at Harvard's Center for the Study of World Religions as well as a visiting scholar at Harvard's Center for Middle Eastern Studies.

An acclaimed writer, Ellis has authored nine books including Unholy Alliance: Religion and Atrocity in Our Time, Ending Auschwitz: The Future of Jewish and Christian Life and the forthcoming O Jerusalem: The Contested Future of the Jewish Covenant. Reviews of his books have appeared in the London Times, Jerusalem Times and numerous scholarly journals.

Ellis has lectured extensively in Europe, Latin America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. In 1992, he traveled to Auschwitz, Poland, where he was a member of a Jewish delegation on the future of Auschwitz, and in 1995 he delivered a lecture at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. He has served as a consultant to the Committee to Combat Racism of the World Council of Churches and as a member of the steering committee of the Religion, Holocaust and Genocide Consultation of the American Academy of Religion.

University Professors teach classes across disciplinary boundaries rather than being based in particular departments, and they report directly to the university provost. During the fall semester, Ellis will teach Jewish Philosophy in the philosophy department and a graduate class on Judaism/Post-Holocaust in the religion department. He also will direct an independent study course on readings in church and state for the Dawson Institute.

Looking for more news from Baylor University?