Forward by Nechama Tec
Series Editor: Jürgen Matthäus
Published by AltaMira Press in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
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“This book deeply and thoroughly addresses the major issues concerning children during the Holocaust. The author’s narrative is clear, concise, and consistently helpful. Here we see a nuanced and appropriately complex understanding of children. Through this sophisticated analysis, we come to understand the importance of age to children’s experiences and their fates.” —Judith Gerson, associate professor, Department of Sociology, Rutgers University
“Children during the Holocaust is a most impressive volume. The source documents are each contextualized. As much of what is included is emotionally moving and sometimes even disturbing, the author’s narrative allows the reader to come to terms with the implications of the documents and the reader’s own response to them without feeling overwhelmed. The volume would be useful both at the graduate and at the undergraduate level, and even as a resource for high school students.” —Sara Horowitz, associate professor, Department of English; director, The Centre for Jewish Studies, York University, York University
“This excellent volume brings together a wealth of original documentation regarding one of the least understood categories of people who experienced the Holocaust: children. Drawn from numerous countries and multiple languages, most of these documents have either never been published before or appear here in English for the first time. The author has masterfully integrated the documents into an incisive and highly readable analytical narrative. The book will be a valuable resource for scholars of the Holocaust, for teachers and students in high schools, and for anyone with a serious interest in the Holocaust.” —Alan E. Steinweis, professor, Department of History; director, Center for Holocaust Studies, University of Vermont
Children during the Holocaust, from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, tells the story of the Holocaust through the eyes and fates of its youngest victims.
The ten chapters follow the arc of the persecutory policies of the Nazis and their sympathizers and the impact these measures had on Jewish children and adolescents—from the years leading to the war to the roundups, deportations, and emigrations, to hidden life and death in the ghettos and concentration camps, and to liberation and coping in the wake of war. This volume examines the reactions of children to discrimination, the loss of livelihood in Jewish homes, and the public humiliation at the hands of fellow citizens and explores the ways in which children’s experiences paralleled and diverged from their adult counterparts. Additional chapters reflect upon the role of non-Jewish children as victims, perpetrators, and bystanders during World War II.
Offering a collection of personal letters, diaries, court testimonies, government documents, military reports, speeches, newspapers, photographs, and artwork, Children during the Holocaust highlights the diversity of children’s experiences during the nightmare years of the Holocaust.
Patricia Heberer, PhD, museum historian at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, is a specialist on medical crimes and eugenics policies in Nazi Germany.