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After the Holocaust

Rebuilding Jewish Lives in Postwar Germany

; Barbara Harshav (Oversetter)

After the Holocaust

This landmark book is the first comprehensive account of the lives of the Jews who remained in Germany immediately following the war. Les mer
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After the Holocaust

This landmark book is the first comprehensive account of the lives of the Jews who remained in Germany immediately following the war. Gathering never-before-published eyewitness accounts from Holocaust survivors, Michael Brenner presents a remarkable history of this period. While much has been written on the Holocaust itself, until now little has been known about the fate of those survivors who remained in Germany. Jews emerging from concentration camps would learn that most of their families had been murdered and their communities destroyed. Furthermore, all Jews in the country would face the stigma of living, as a 1948 resolution of the World Jewish Congress termed it, on "bloodsoaked German soil." Brenner brings to life the psychological, spiritual, and material obstacles they surmounted as they rebuilt their lives in Germany. At the heart of his narrative is a series of fifteen interviews Brenner conducted with some of the most important witnesses who played an active role in the reconstruction--including presidents of Jewish communities, rabbis, and journalists.
Based on the Yiddish and German press and unpublished archival material, the first part of this book provides a historical introduction to this fascinating topic. Here the author analyzes such diverse aspects as liberation from concentration camps, cultural and religious life among the Jewish Displaced Persons, antisemitism and philosemitism in post-war Germany, and the complex relationship between East European and German Jews. A second part consists of the fifteen interviews, conducted by Brenner, with witnesses representing the diverse background of the postwar Jewish community. While most of them were camp survivors, others returned from exile or came to Germany as soldiers of the Jewish Brigade or with international Jewish aid organizations. A third part, which covers the development of the Jewish community in Germany from the 1950s until today, concludes the book.

Preface to the English EditionIntroduction3IHistorical Overview7IIWitness Accounts791Ernest Landau: The First Days of Freedom792Julius Spokojny: Zionist Activist in the DP Camp873Arno Lustiger: Keeping the Memory Alive904Norbert Wollheim: Jewish Autonomy in the British Zone955Heinz Galinski: New Beginning of Jewish Life in Berlin1006Estrongo Nachama: The Singer of Auschwitz1027Nathan Peter Levinson: The Functions of a Rabbi in Postwar Germany1078Josef Warscher: From Buchenwald to Stuttgart1119Wolf Weil: A "Schindler Jew" in the Bavarian Province11410Arno Hamburger: Coming Home in the Uniform of the Jewish Brigade11711David Schuster: Restoration of a Small Jewish Community12012Simon Snopkowski: The Jewish Student Association12213Lilli Marx: Renewal of the German-Jewish Press12514E. G. Lowenthal: On Behalf of the Jewish Aid Organization130IIIFive Decades of Jewish Life in Postwar Germany135IVInterview with Ignatz Bubis, President of the Central Council of the Jews in Germany, on the Situation of German Jewry (July 1994)159Appendix: Bibliographical Essay163Notes173Index187

A masterly short survey, the best in existence, of Jewish life such as it was in Germany after the defeat. -- Walter Laqueur, Chairman, International Research Council [Michael Brenner] proves the historical resiliency of the Jewish community... An exciting and accurate chronicle. -- Sander L. Gilman, The University of Chicago The appearance of this book in English is most welcome... It is a sobering book but a necessary one. -- Peter Gay, Professor Emeritus, Yale University

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