Professor of Jewish Studies and of World Literatures and Chair of the Program in Jewish Studies
Contact & Office Hours
Wednesday 9-10:30 and by appt.
Seelye Hall 203
A.M., Ph.D., Harvard University
B.A., McGill University
JYA, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Justin Cammy is a literary and cultural historian with research and teaching interests in Yiddish literature, Eastern European Jewish history, Zionism and contemporary Israel. He holds appointments in Jewish studies, World Literatures, Middle Eastern studies, and Russian and East European studies. He also is adjunct professor and graduate faculty in German studies at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. His current administrative responsibilities at Smith include his roles as chair of Jewish studies, faculty co-director of STRIDE (Student Research in Departments), and Secretary of the Faculty.
Justin Cammy's publications range from essays on Yiddish literary history to scholarly translations of Yiddish literature to introductions to new editions of works by Yiddish writers and memoirists. He is a leading authority on the writers of the interwar literary group Yung-Vilne (Young Vilna). His translation and critical edition of A. Sutzkever’s Vilna Ghetto appeared in 2021.
Justin Cammy has served as senior research fellow at the Goldreich Institute for Yiddish Language, Literature and Culture at Tel Aviv University (current), resident research fellow at the Frankel Institute for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan (winter/spring 2020), translation fellow at the Yiddish Book Center (2018); resident research fellow at the International Institute for Holocaust Research at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem (2014); and Mellon Senior Scholar on the Holocaust and visiting professor of English at UCLA (2009). He has also served on the faculty of the Steiner Yiddish summer program at the Yiddish Book Center and the Naomi Prawer Kadar International Yiddish summer program at Tel Aviv University.
In a prior life in Canada he was briefly a child actor, having served as the voice of Kevin in The Care Bears in the Land Without Feeling and three years as a member of the ensemble cast of Nickelodeon's top-rated '80s show You Can't Do That on Television.
In 2006, Cammy was awarded Smith College’s Sherrerd Prize for Distinguished Teaching.
Books (Edited and/or Translated)
Translator and editor, From the Vilna Ghetto to Nuremberg: Memoir and Testimony by Abraham Sutzkever, with an afterword by Justin Cammy and Avraham Novershtern. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2021.
Editor, Arguing the Modern Jewish Canon: Essays on Jewish Literature and Culture, with Dara Horn, Alyssa Quint, and Rachel Rubinstein. Cambridge: Harvard Center for Jewish Studies, 2008.
Translator and editor, On Long Winter Nights: Memoirs of a Jewish Family in a Galician Township 1870-1890, by Hinde Bergner. Cambridge: Harvard Center for Jewish Studies, 2005.
Articles or Book Chapters
“The Prose of Everyday Life: Moyshe Levin’s Vilna Peoplescapes” (journal article with 3 original translations). Colloquia: Journal of the Lithuanian Institute of Literature and Folklore (2021).
“Unsettling the Linguistic and Geographical Borders of Jewish American Literature: Régine Robin’s La Québécoite.” In Teaching Jewish American Literature, ed. Roberta Rosenberg and Rachel Rubinstein. MLA, 2020.
Introduction to The Full Pomegranate: Poems of Avrom Sutzkever, selected and translated by Richard Fein. SUNY Press, January 2019.
“The Untold Story of Yungvald,” Catalog of the Leyzer Ran Collection. Cambridge: Harvard College Library, 2017, 23-42.
“Judging the Judgment of Shomer: Jewish Literature versus Jewish Reading” (article) and “The Judgment of Shomer, by Sholem Aleichem” (annotated translation from Yiddish), Arguing the Modern Jewish Canon. Cambridge: Harvard Center for Jewish Studies, 2008, 85-185.
Cammy and Marta Fliglerowicz, “Translating History Into Art: The Influences of Cyprian Kamil Norwid in Avrom Sutzkever’s Poetry,” Prooftexts: A Journal of Jewish Literary History 27:3 (2007), 427-473.
“Vision and Redemption: Abraham Sutzkever’s Poems of Zion(ism),” Yiddish After the Holocaust, ed. Joseph Sherman. Oxford: Boulevard Books, 2004, 240-265.
“The Politics of Home, the Culture of Place: ‘Yung Vilne’: A Journal of Literature and Art (1934-1936),” Judische Kultur(en) im Neuen Europa: Wilna 1918-1939, edited by Marina Dmitrieva and Heidemarie Petersen. Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag, 2004, 117-133.
“Jung Wilnie i kultura jidysz w miedzywojennym Wilne,” Poezja i poeci w Wilnie lat 1920-1940, edited by Tadeusz Bujnicki and Krzysztof Biedrzycki. (Krakow: Taiwpn Universitas, 2003), 257-286. Translation into Polish and expansion of “Tsevorfenebleter: The Emergence of Yung-Vilne,” Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry, Vol. 14, edited by Antony Polonsky. London: The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2001, 170-191.