Thursday, February 8, 2024

A Conversation about "The Counterfeit Countess"


A Conversation about "The Counterfeit Countess"
with Elizabeth B. White and Joanna Sliwa


In 2024, the United Nations pays tribute to the bravery of all those who stood up to the Nazis, despite the grave risks. The theme guiding Holocaust education and remembrance in 2024 is “Recognizing the extraordinary courage of victims and survivors of the Holocaust.” We honor their legacy with their remarkable stories and history.

In February, we will highlight the extraordinary courage of Dr. Josephine Janina Mehlberg.

There will be two opportunities to engage with Elizabeth B. White (former Research Director for the Center for the Prevention of Genocide at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum) and Joanna Sliwa (historian at the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany), co-authors of the newly published, “The Counterfeit Countess”. White and Sliwa detail the history of the unrecognized hero, Jewish mathematician Dr. Josephine Janina Mehlberg. Masquerading as a Polish aristocrat, the “Countess” persuaded SS officials to release thousands of Poles from Majdanek concentration camp. Dr. Mehlberg secured permission to deliver food and medicine for thousands more inmates, and she smuggled supplies and messages to incarcerated resistance fighters. Incredibly, Dr. Mehlberg eluded detection, survived the war, and emigrated to the United States.



Virtual Discussion
Thursday, 15 February, at 12:00 p.m. EST



This event is hosted by The Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity, The Graduate Center—City University of New York, in association with the Center for Jewish Studies and CUNY Academy for the Humanities and Sciences, The Graduate Center—City University of New York; the William T. Daly School of General Studies and the Master of Arts in Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Stockton University, and the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme. Professor Debórah Dwork (Director of The Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity, GC—CUNY) chairs. 



Meet the Authors at the UN Bookshop
Tuesday, 27 February, at 1:00 p.m. EST


To attend the event at the UN Bookshop, no registration is required. Please note that seating is very limited, and is offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. This event can also be watched live and on-demand via the @UNPublications Facebook page

For guests attending the event in-person, please arrive by 12:30 p.m. at the UN Visitor Check-in Office (801 First Avenue at 45th  Street, across the street from the UN Visitors Entrance) to obtain a security pass. 

After receiving your pass, proceed across the street to the United Nations Visitors Entrance (46th Street and First Avenue) for security screening and access to UN Headquarters. 

The United Nations Bookshop is located in the Visitors Concourse, in the basement of the General Assembly Building. 

All visitors 18 years and older (and unaccompanied children 12 years and older) are required to present a valid government-issued photo identification when entering the United Nations. The photo identification must be original (no photographs or photocopies accepted), in Latin/Roman characters, and may include: Passport, Driver's license, National identity card and IDNYC Card. 


United Nations Department of Global Communications
The Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme
405 East 42nd Street · New York, NY 10017