Witnessing the Disaster: Essays on Representation and the Holocaust
Michael Bernard-Donals, Richard Glejzer
Univ of Wisconsin Press, Dec 15, 2003 - History - 324 pages
Witnessing the Disaster examines how histories, films, stories and novels, memorials and museums, and survivor testimonies involve problems of witnessing: how do those who survived, and those who lived long after the Holocaust, make clear to us what happened? How can we distinguish between more and less authentic accounts? Are histories more adequate descriptors of the horror than narrative? Does the susceptibility of survivor accounts to faulty memory and the vestiges of trauma make them any more or less useful as instruments of witness? And how do we authenticate their accuracy without giving those who deny the Holocaust a small but dangerous foothold?
These essayists aim to move past the notion that the Holocaust as an event defies representation. They look at specific cases of Holocaust representation and consider their effect, their structure, their authenticity, and the kind of knowledge they produce. Taken together they consider the tension between history and memory, the vexed problem of eyewitness testimony and its status as evidence, and the ethical imperatives of Holocaust representation.
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Adorno’s Agamben Amalek American Anne Frank anti-Semitism Art Spiegelman Artie Artie’s Auschwitz authenticity bear witness become Bellow Blanchot camps caust Citrine comic crisis critical cultural deﬁned deﬁnition diary Differend difﬁcult disaster discourse Doesseker Dominick LaCapra Eliach English essay ethics event experience father father’s story Felman ﬁction ﬁgure ﬁlm ﬁnal ﬁnd ﬁrst German Hasidic Holo Holocaust horror human Humboldt’s Humboldt’s Gift Ibid identiﬁcation interviews Jewish Jews knowledge Kosinski LaCapra language Levinas literary literature Lyotard Maurice Blanchot Maus memory metonymy Mormon multilingual Muselmann narrative Nazi novel one’s Painted Bird paradox perhaps Posen speech possible Princeton question radical reader reading redemption reﬂection relation representation response Saul Bellow Saul Friedlander seems sense sexual Shoah Shoshana Felman signiﬁcant Sophie Sophie’s Choice speak speciﬁc Spiegelman Steve Stingo Styron sublime survivor teaching telling testimony tion trans trauma understand University Press victims Vladek Wilkomirski words writing Yiddish York Young
Page 25 - Nora fears, purely in history. ln my reading, postmemory is distinguished from memory by generational distance and from history by deep personal connection. Postmemory is a powerful and very particular form of memory precisely because its connection to its object or source is mediated not through recollection but through an imaginative investment and creation.