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Arthur Bernstein Papers

 Collection — translation missing: en.enumerations.container_type.container: Consolidated Box P27, Folder: P-925
Identifier: P-925

Scope and Content Note

Arthur Bernstein’s collection contains a copy of his petition on behalf of the Soviet Jewish Prisoner of Conscience, computer scientist Anatoly Sharansky signed by over 230 prominent computer scientists and mailed to the Soviet and American officials and to the United Nations in 1977. The collection also includes Dr. Bernstein’s autobiographical statement with a brief history of the Sharansky petition.

Dates

  • 1977, 2011

Creator

Access Restrictions

The collection is open to all researchers, except items that may be restricted due to their fragility, or privacy.

Use Restrictions

No permission is required to quote, reproduce or otherwise publish manuscript materials found in this collection, as long as the usage is scholarly, educational, and non-commercial. For inquiries about other usage, please contact the Director of Collections and Engagement at mmeyers@ajhs.org.

For reference questions, please email: inquiries@cjh.org

Historical Note

The Papers of Arthur Bernstein represent one collection housed within the Archive of the American Soviet Jewry Movement (AASJM). These papers reflect the effort, beginning in the 1960s through the late 1980s, of thousands of American Jews of all denominations and political orientations to stop the persecution and discrimination of Jews in the Soviet Union. The American Soviet Jewry Movement (ASJM) is considered to be the most influential Movements of the American Jewish community in the 20th century. The beginnings of the organized American Soviet Jewry Movement became a model for efforts to aid Soviet Jews in other countries, among them Great Britain, Canada, and France. The movement can be traced to the early 1960s, when the first organizations were created to address the specific problem of the persecution and isolation of Soviet Jews by the government of the Soviet Union.

Dr. Arthur Bernstein served as a Professor of Computer Science at the State University of New York at Stony Brook from 1970 to 2005. Being acutely aware of the criticism leveled against American Jews for their relative silence during the Holocaust, Dr. Bernstein was motivated to participate in the Soviet Jewry movement. Dr. Bernstein decided to take up the cause of the fellow computer scientist, Soviet Jewish activist Anatoly Sharansky during his trial for treason and anti-Soviet activities in 1977. With help from Lynn Singer at the Long Island Committee for Soviet Jewry he created the petition in support of Sharansky and had it signed by 230 computer scientists, many of whom were leading figures in academia and the research community. In August of 1977 the completed petition was sent to the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Leonid Brezhnev, and to the President of the Soviet Academy of Sciences, Anatoly Alexandrov. Copies of the petition went out to the United Nations and United States President Jimmy Carter and Secretary of State Cyrus Vance. Dr. Bernstein arranged for the wife of the imprisoned Anatoly Sharansky to speak to the students at Stony Brook in March 1978.

Extent

1 Folders

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

The papers of the Soviet Jewry movement activist Professor of Computer Science, Emeritus at the State University of New York at Stony Brook Dr. Arthur Bernstein contain a copy of his petition on behalf of fellow computer scientist and Soviet Jewish Prisoner of Conscience Anatoly Sharansky signed by over 230 prominent American computer scientists and mailed to the Soviet and American officials and to the United Nations in 1977. The collection also contains an autobiographical note with a brief history of the Sharansky petition.

Arrangement

The collection is arranged into a single series.

Physical Location

Collection is located in Consolidated Box P27.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Arthur Bernstein in 2011.

Related Material

The Papers of Arthur Bernstein is one individual collection within the Archive of the American Soviet Jewry Movement (AASJM) located at the American Jewish Historical Society (AJHS). Other Soviet Jewry Movement collections at AJHS include the records of Action for Soviet Jewry (I-487), the National Conference on Soviet Jewry (NCSJ; I-181 and I-181A), the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews (I-410, I-410A), Houston Action for Soviet Jewry (I-500), Bay Area Council for Soviet Jews (I-505), Seattle Action for Soviet Jewry (I-507), Medical Mobilization for Soviet Jewry, The Jewish Chronicle Soviet Jewry Collection, the papers of Joel Ackerman (P-787), Julia Mates Cheney (P-806), Jerry Goodman (P-863), Laurel and Alan J. Gould (P-866), Carolyn W. Sanger (P-870), Leah Lieberman (P-869), Si Frumkin (P-871), Elaine Pittell (P-873), Sanford A. Gradinger (P-880), Shaul Osadchey (P-882), Leonard S. Cahan (P-883), Doris H. Goldstein (P-887), David H. Hill (P-888), Margery Sanford (P-889), Pinchas Mordechai Teitz (P-891), David Waksberg (P-895), Pamela B. Cohen (P-897), Moshe Decter (P-899), William Korey (P-903), Morey Schapira (P-906), Charlotte Gerper Turner (P-907), Myrtle Sitowitz (P-908), Kathleen M. Hyman (P-911), Babette Wampold (P-912), Rabbi David Goldstein and Shannie Goldstein (P-918) and Leslie Schaffer (P-923)

Individual accounts of activities within the Soviet Jewry Movement are preserved in the UJA Oral History Collection (I-433), which includes accounts from members of the following organizations: the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews, Bay Area Council on Soviet Jews (BACSJ), Seattle Action for Soviet Jews, Houston Action for Soviet Jews, Chicago Action for Soviet Jews, Colorado Committee of Concern for Soviet Jews and the National Conference on Soviet Jewry. Interviewees include accounts by Lillian Forman (BACSJ), Ann Polunsky, Morey Schapira, Myrtle Sitowitz, Deborah Turkin, David Waksberg, Sylvia Weinberg and Dolores Wilkenfeld. In addition, posters related to the Soviet Jewry Movement can be found in the Jewish Student Organizations Collection (I-61).

Additional materials from other collections include records dealing with the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry (SSSJ) located within the North American Jewish Students Appeal (NAJSA, I-338) and the records of the National Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council (NJCRAC, I-172). Related records are also located at the AJHS in Boston, MA including memorabilia and ephemera of the New England Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry (I-237) and the Records of the Student Coalition for Soviet Jewry – Brandeis University (I-493).
Title
Guide to the Arthur Bernstein Papers, 1977, 2011 *P-925
Status
Completed
Author
Processed by Andrey Filimonov
Date
© 2011
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Description is in English.

Revision Statements

  • November 2020: RJohnstone: post-ASpace migration cleanup.

Repository Details

Part of the American Jewish Historical Society Repository

Contact:
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