Israel Charny

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Israel Charny
Born 1931
Brooklyn, New York
Occupation Psychologist, genocide scholar

Dr. Israel W. Charny (born 1931, Brooklyn, New York) is an Israeli psychologist and genocide scholar.[1] He is the editor of two-volume Encyclopedia of Genocide,[2] and executive director of the Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide in Jerusalem.[3][4]


Israel Charny received his A.B. in Psychology with Distinction from Temple University in 1952, and his. Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Rochester in 1957. He established and directed the first group psychological practice in the Philadelphia area (1958–1973), where he was also the first Professor of Psychology at the newly founded re constructionist Rabbinical College in Philadelphia.

An affiliate of the Institute for the Study of Genocide, the International Association of Genocide Scholars was founded in 1994 by Israel Charny,[5] Helen Fein, Robert Melson and Roger Smith.[6]

He has been devoted to the study of the Holocaust and genocide since the mid-1960s. His first publication on the subject which appeared in Jewish Education in 1968 was "Teaching the Violence of the Holocaust: A Challenge to Educating Potential Future Oppressors and Victims for Nonviolence." However, he is widely criticized[who?] for separating the two terms Holocaust and genocide[citation needed] and is frequently accused[who?] of using his background in clinical psychology to manipulate the masses[neutrality is disputed] and discounting the term genocide. He once wrote, "...Genocide in the generic sense means the mass killing of substantial numbers of human beings, when not in the course of military action against the military forces of an avowed enemy, under conditions of the essential defencelessness of the victim..."

Charny is Professor of Psychology and Family Therapy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he was the Founder and first Director of the Program for Advanced Studies in Integrative Psychotherapy (Family, Couples, Individual and Group Therapy) of the Martin Buber Center and Department of Psychology.[7] He is best known for his active stance against denial of the Armenian Genocide, and has written articles[8] and given lectures on the subjects of genocide and genocide denial. He is most noted for his comparison of Armenian Genocide denial to Holocaust denial,[9] citing that they both have similar techniques and psychological motivation.


  1. ^ Jacobson, Judie (September 11, 2013). "Conversation with…Dr. Israel Charny". Hartford, Connecticut: Jewish Ledger. Retrieved February 20, 2014. 
  2. ^ Peres stands accused over denial of 'meaningless' Armenian Holocaust by Robert Fisk - The Independent, London, Apr 18, 2001
  3. ^ On Armenian Genocide, Politics Trumps Truth
  4. ^ Working to Make a Difference: The Personal and Pedagogical Stories of Holocaust Educators ... - Page 132 by Samuel Totten - History
  5. ^ Encyclopedia of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity - Page 277 by Dinah Shelton
  6. ^ Genocide Scholars Conference in 2005 to Feature Armenian Genocide - Richard Kloian
  7. ^
  8. ^ Major article on Holocaust and Genocide Denial By Dr. Israel Charney
  9. ^ The Psychological Satisfaction of Denials of the Holocaust or Other Genocides by Non-Extremists or Bigots, and Even by Known Scholars - by Israel W. Charny


  • Encyclopedia of Genocide
  • Genocide: a critical bibliographic review
  • The Widening Circle of Genocide
  • Century of Genocide Critical Essays and Eyewitness Accounts
  • "A Classification of Denials of the Holocaust and Other Genocides", Journal of Genocide Research 2003, 5(1), pp. 11–34.

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