Hay of Seaton Memorial Lecture

Hay of Seaton Memorial Lecture

The Hay of Seaton Memorial Lecture Series was established in the name of Malcolm Hay of Seaton, who devoted his life to highlighting the history of anti-Semitism and the Jewish people. His widow, Alice Ivy Hay of Seaton, made a bequest in her will to the University of Aberdeen and a memorial lecture series was established for the promotion of greater understanding and furtherance of the knowledge of the history and culture of the Jewish people.

Who was Malcolm Hay of Seaton

Malcolm Hay (1881 - 1962), soldier and scholar, was the last Laird of Seaton, an extensive group of estates in Aberdeenshire, Scotland.

Severely wounded in France and taken prisoner in the First World War, but repatriated as being deemed too incapacitated to be of any further service to his country, he thereupon became Director of Military Intelligence 1B at the War Office for the remainder of that war. In retrospect, his work there proved to be the first indication of a passion that was to consume his life; his search for the truth and his battle to establish it.

During the Second World War, while devoting himself to raising large sums of money for the relief of prisoners of war in Germany and Italy, he became increasingly disturbed at the reports coming in from Germany of the wholesale massacre of European Jewry at the hands of the Nazis. Already a distinguished historian and author, this prompted him to learn Hebrew and read widely about the Jews, in order to come to grips with the history of anti-Semitism. The result, a highly controversial book The Foot of Pride was published in the USA in 1950, reprinted in 1960 and 1975 as Thy Brother's Blood, and finally in 1981 as The Roots of Christian Anti-Semitism.

After his death, his widow, Alice Ivy Hay of Seaton, worked unceasingly to continue his work. This was expressed most clearly in 1981 in the terms of a bequest in her will to the University of Aberdeen, which was to be used exclusively to promote a greater understanding and knowledge of the history and culture of the Jewish people.

List of Previous Lectures


Professor Shirli Gilbert, UCL

South African Jews, the Holocaust, Apartheid and Israel. 

Read more about the delivered lecture here


Professor Kenneth Hart Green, University of Toronto

Did the Holocaust Reveal Something New About Man? The Post-Holocaust Thought of Emil Fackenheim

Listen to the audio recording of the Aberdeen iteration of Professor Green's lecture below. 


His Most Eminent Highness, Fra' Matthew Festing, Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta

Opportunities for Cooperation between the Faiths of the Middle East: an humanitarian view from the Order of Malta


Professor Jon D. Levenson, Harvard University

Jews and Christians as Abrahamic Communities


Professor Zygmunt Bauman, University of Leeds

Jews and other Europeans - Old and New


The Right Reverend Richard Harries, The Bishop of Oxford

Jewish and Christian Approaches to Suffering


Professor David Novak, Professor Jewish Studies, University of Toronto

Judaism and the Moral Crisis of the West


The Very Reverend Professor T. F. Stransky

Opening for Reconciliation in the Holy Land Today


Abba Eban

Breakthrough to Peace in the Middle East


Cardinal Willebrands

The Church Facing Modern Anti-Semitism