Four Letters to the Witnesses of My Childhood

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Syracuse University Press, 2007 - Biography & Autobiography - 142 pages
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The evocation of memory is fraught with emotional and historical significance in this distinctive Holocaust memoir. With lyrical prose and remarkable candor, Helena Ganor narrates her story through a series of recently penned letters to the significant people in her life during her wartime girlhood: her mother, sister, father, and stepmother. The intimate nature of her choice of literary form brings the individuals and events of the past into vivid reality.
Ganor combines deeply personal reminiscences as a Jewish child cast out alone to survive under Nazi occupation with reflections on the varied ways that humans respond to catastrophe. Several unlikely protectors are given their due in Ganor's account: a Nazi officer does not reveal the cowering eight-year-old's hiding place to his superiors; a Polish prostitute offers the child temporary food and shelter. The author's letters reveal much about living in pre-war Lvov, Poland, and its surrounding area. Her descriptions of relationships between local Jews, Poles, Ukrainians, and Gypsies in southeastern Poland lend a broad historical context to the Holocaust.

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Letter to My Mother
Letter to My Sister
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