Published on October 12, 2022 by Morgan Black
On Thursday, Oct. 27 at 5:30 p.m., several Samford University entities will partner with Global Ties Alabama to present a discussion based on the book My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me: A Black Woman Discovers Her Family's Nazi Past by New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Teege.
At age 38, Jennifer Teege happened to pluck a library book from the shelf and discovered a horrifying fact: her grandfather was Amon Goeth, the vicious Nazi commandant depicted in the movie Schindler’s List. The more Teege learned about him, the more she understood that if her grandfather had met her—a Black woman—he would have killed her.
Teege was raised in Germany by adoptive parents but had contact with her birth mother and grandmother. She attended Tel Aviv University where she learned fluent Hebrew. She had no knowledge of her family’s secret, and her shocking discovery sent her into a severe depression. Through therapy, she emerged to seek a greater understanding of her biological family and confront this truth—visiting the sites her grandfather’s crimes and sharing her story in the bestselling memoir, My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me.
Samford’s Cumberland School of Law, Howard College of Arts and Sciences and Office of Diversity and Intercultural Initiatives will co-host the book discussion.
Cassandra Adams, diversity, equity and inclusion consultant in Cumberland School of Law said, "It’s a pleasure to collaborate with Global Ties Alabama once again to bring an internationally acclaimed author to Samford. Ms. Teege’s story of her genealogical discovery and how that revelation affected her is remarkable and courageous. It’s a reminder of the responsibility we all have to promote peace, love and the humane treatment of everyone because our actions have generational consequences."
Similarly, Dean Timothy Hall in Samford’s Howard College of Arts and Sciences and Denise Gregory, Samford's associate provost for student success and diversity and inclusion, are honored to be a part of the event.
Hall said, “I’m happy to be co-sponsoring this event to bring Jennifer Teege to campus. She has a compelling story to tell, and I anticipate that students will find it both fascinating and thought provoking.”
Gregory said, "The Office of Diversity and Intercultural Initiatives is always excited to partner with divisions across campus. The partnership with Cumberland School of Law and Howard College allows us to create opportunities for our students to learn about unique stories while interacting with the author."
Samford's campus community and the public are invited to attend the event in Cumberland School of Law’s John L. Carroll Moot Courtroom.
Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 66th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 104th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,683 students from 47 states and 19 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference, and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.