Michael Marrus was Professor of History and Dean of Graduate Studies at the University of Toronto and served for nineteen years as Governor of the institution. He was a senior fellow of Massey College until 2017 and is the Chancellor Rose and Ray Wolfe Professor Emeritus of Holocaust Studies.
Marrus has written several books that have received acclaim and distinction.
Marrus’ most recent work, Lessons of the Holocaust, published in 2015, deals with the historical and moral controversies around the interpretation of the Holocaust and its significance. In it, Marrus denies there can be any definitive set of lessons to be learned from the destruction of European Jewry and instead affirms that there are many ever-evolving questions that need to be continually studied and re-interpreted. His works have been translated into French, German, Polish, Hebrew, Portuguese, and Japanese.
In 2017, Professor Marrus resigned his fellowship at the University of Toronto for making a racist comment. Marrus is purported to have said the following to a black student; “You know this is your master, eh? Do you feel the lash?” (1)
Marrus resigned after this incident and the university suspended use of the “master” designation as well as introduced sensitivity training.
- Abdullah Shihipar, 3 October 2017, Massey College and insidious racism on Canadian campuses