Almost ninety children and grandchildren of Holocaust survivors from sixteen countries explore how their parents' and grandparents' experiences of the Shoah helped shape their identity and their attitudes toward God, faith, Judaism, the Jewish people and the world. Their reflections will inform and inspire people of all faiths and backgrounds.
A Powerful, Life-Affirming New Perspective on the Holocaust
Almost ninety children and grandchildren of Holocaust survivors--theologians, scholars, spiritual leaders, authors, artists, political and community leaders and media personalities--from sixteen countries on six continents reflect on how the memories transmitted to them have affected their lives. Profoundly personal stories explore faith, identity and legacy in the aftermath of the Holocaust as well as our role in ensuring that future genocides and similar atrocities never happen again.
There have been many books and studies about children of Holocaust survivors--the so-called second and third generations--with a psycho-social focus. This book is different. It is intended to reflect what they believe, who they are and how that informs what they have done and are doing with their lives.
From major religious or intellectual explorations to shorter commentaries on experiences, quandaries and cultural, political and personal affirmations, almost ninety contributors from sixteen countries respond to this question: how have your parents' and grandparents' experiences and examples helped shape your identity and your attitudes toward God, faith, Judaism, the Jewish people and the world as a whole?
For people of all faiths and backgrounds, these powerful and deeply moving statements will have a profound effect on the way our and future generations understand and shape their understanding of the Holocaust.
Praise from Pope Francis for Menachem Rosensaft's essay reconciling God's presence with the horrors of the Holocaust:
"When you, with humility, are telling us where God was in that moment, I felt within me that you had transcended all possible explanations and that, after a long pilgrimage--sometimes sad, tedious or dull--you came to discover a certain logic and it is from there that you were speaking to us; the logic of First Kings 19:12, the logic of that 'gentle breeze' (I know that it is a very poor translation of the rich Hebrew expression) that constitutes the only possible hermeneutic interpretation.
"Thank you from my heart. And, please, do not forget to pray for me. May the Lord bless you."
--His Holiness Pope Francis
Justice Rosalie Silberman Abella of the Supreme Court of Canada
Historian Ilya Altman, cofounder and cochairman, Russian Research and Educational Holocaust Center, Moscow
New York Times reporter and author Joseph Berger, New York
Historian Eleonora Bergman, former director, Jewish Historical Institute, Warsaw
Vivian Glaser Bernstein, former cochief, Group Programmes Unit, United Nations Department of Public Information, New York
Michael Brenner, professor of Jewish history and culture, Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich; chair in Israel studies, American University, Washington, DC
Novelist and poet Lily Brett, winner of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize Award, New York
New York Times deputy national news editor and former Jerusalem bureau chief Ethan Bronner, New York
Stephanie Butnick, associate editor, Tablet Magazine, New York
Rabbi Chaim Zev Citron, Ahavas Yisroel Synagogue and Yeshiva Ohr Elchonon Chabad, Los Angeles
Dr. Stephen L. Comite, assistant clinical professor of dermatology, Mount Sinai Hospital, New York
Elaine Culbertson, director of a program taking American high school teachers to study Holocaust sites, New York
Former Israeli Minister of Internal Security and Shin Bet director Avi Dichter, Israel
Lawrence S. Elbaum