Different Voices: Women and the Holocaust

By Carol Rittner; John K. Roth | Go to book overview

12
Sara Nomberg-Przytyk

How is this possible? I pondered. On one side such bestiality, and on the other unselfish love toward another creature.

SARA NOMBERG-PRZYTYK

Sara Nomberg-Przytyk was born in Lublin, Poland, in 1915. Growing up in an Orthodox Jewish environment, she experienced Polish antisemitism early on. She attended the University of Warsaw, spent several years in Polish jails because of her leftist political activities, and fled east to Bialystok when the Germans invaded Poland in 1939. Caught in the Bialystok ghetto in 1943, she was sent to a camp at Stutthof and then deported to Auschwitz. Danuta Czech Auschwitz Chronicle mentions a transport that reached Auschwitz from Stutthof on January 12, 1944. It contained nearly 1,000 prisoners--male and female. Only 120 men and 134 women were spared from immediate death. Probably Nomberg-Przytyk was among that "lucky" 134, because her Auschwitz: True Tales from a Grotesque Land notes that she became a Zugang (a new arrival) on January 13. About a year later, along with hundreds of other women, she was force-marched to Ravensbrück.

Returning to Poland to "build a socialist society" after her liberation in late April 1945, Nomberg-Przytyk married in 1946, started a family, and worked as a journalist in Lublin. She also took time to write about her Holocaust experiences. In fact, Auschwitz: True Tales from a Grotesque Land was accepted for publication and was about to go to press when Poland's Communist government instigated an outburst of antisemitism following Israel's victory in the 1967 Six-Day War. Nomberg-Przytyk was told that her book would be published only if she eliminated all

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Different Voices: Women and the Holocaust
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • ALSO BY CAROL RITTNER AND JOHN K. ROTH ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Maps and Photographs ix
  • Preface xi
  • Prologue Women and the Holocaust 1
  • General Suggestions for Further Reading 20
  • Chronology 22
  • Part One Voices of Experience 35
  • Notes 39
  • 1: Ida Fink 40
  • 2: Etty Hillesum 46
  • Notes 57
  • 3: Charlotte Delbo 58
  • 4: Isabella Leitner 65
  • 5: Olga Lengyel 69
  • 6: Livia E. Bitton Jackson 73
  • 7: Pelagia Lewinska 84
  • 8: Charlotte Delbo 99
  • 9: Gisella Perl 104
  • 10: Olga Lengyel 119
  • 11: Anna Heilman and Rose Meth 130
  • Notes 134
  • Notes 141
  • 12: Sara Nomberg-Przytyk 143
  • Suggestions for Further Reading 149
  • Part Two Voices of Interpretation 155
  • Notes 159
  • 13: Gisela Bock 161
  • Notes 179
  • 14: Marion A. Kaplan 187
  • Notes 207
  • 15: Sybil Milton 213
  • Notes 237
  • 16: Vera Laska 250
  • Notes 267
  • 17: Gitta Sereny 270
  • Preface 271
  • 18: Claudia Koonz 287
  • Notes 304
  • 19: Magda Trocmeé 309
  • Suggestions for Further Reading 317
  • Part Three Voices of Reflection 319
  • Notes 323
  • 20: Irena Klepfisz 324
  • 21: Charlotte Delbo 328
  • 22: Ida Fink 332
  • 23: Deborah E. Lipstadt 349
  • 24: Mary Jo Leddy 355
  • 25: Rachel Altman 363
  • Notes 372
  • 26: Joan Ringelheim 373
  • Notes 400
  • Appendices 406
  • Suggestions for Further Reading 419
  • Epilogue - Different Voices 421
  • Notes 426
  • Glossary 427
  • Index 431
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