Ghosts of Home: The Afterlife of Czernowitz in Jewish Memory

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University of California Press, Jan 19, 2010 - Religion - 392 pages
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In modern-day Ukraine, east of the Carpathian Mountains, there is an invisible city. Known as Czernowitz, the "Vienna of the East" under the Habsburg empire, this vibrant Jewish-German Eastern European culture vanished after World War II—yet an idealized version lives on, suspended in the memories of its dispersed people and passed down to their children like a precious and haunted heirloom. In this original blend of history and communal memoir, Marianne Hirsch and Leo Spitzer chronicle the city's survival in personal, familial, and cultural memory. They find evidence of a cosmopolitan culture of nostalgic lore—but also of oppression, shattered promises, and shadows of the Holocaust in Romania. Hirsch and Spitzer present the first historical account of Jewish Czernowitz in the English language and offer a profound analysis of memory's echo across generations.
 

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Contents

1 Where are you from?
3
2 Vienna of the East
20
3 Strolling the Herrengasse
53
4 The Idea of Czernowitz
72
5 Are we really in the Soviet Union?
99
6 The Crossroads
122
THE DARKER SIDE 2000
145
7 Maps to Nowhere
147
10 This was once my home
232
GHOSTS OF HOME 2006
257
11 The Persistence of Czernowitz
259
12 The Tile Stove
290
EPILOGUE 2008
301
Notes
319
Selected Readings
343
Index
353

8 The Spot on the Lapel
162
9 There was never a camp here
197

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About the author (2010)

Marianne Hirsch is William Peterfield Trent Professor of English and Comparative Literature, and Co-Director of the Institute of Research on Women and Gender, at Columbia University. She is the author of Family Frames: Photography, Narrative, and Postmemory, among other books. Leo Spitzer is Kathe Tappe Vernon Professor of History Emeritus at Dartmouth College, and the author of many books, most recently Hotel Bolivia: A Culture of Memory in a Refuge from Nazism.

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