So much work on women and the Holocaust remains to be done. What has been researched thus far merely touches the surface of a complex and difficult field of study.
If anyone is the founding mother of women's Holocaust studies, Joan Ringelheim deserves to be among the top contenders for the distinction. Yean ago this philosopher and historian was organizing conferences, writing essays, and setting agendas for research in this area. She did so even when critics told her that such concerns were inappropriate or morally questionable because, it was mistakenly alleged, they would distract attention from more important Holocaust issues. Ringelheim wisely persisted, and her efforts show signs of paying off. More attention has been paid to issues involving women and the Holocaust, and it is likely that even more will be paid in the future. Meanwhile, few if any scholars are more knowledgeable about this subject. Whenever she speaks or writes about women and the Holocaust, other students of the Holocaust must take notice.
"Different horrors, same hell"-- Ringelheim uses equally potent words to make points related to Myrna Goldenberg's succinct phrase. Underscoring that "surviving is different from living" and that "oppression does not make people better, oppression makes people oppressed," Ringelheim speaks about double jeopardy. What she means and wants to explore she summarizes effectively in her 1990 essay, "Thoughts about Women and the Holocaust":
Jewish women suffered both as Jews and as women from anti-semitism and sexism in their genocidal forms. More women were deported than men. More women were killed