The Invisible Wall: Germans and Jews : a Personal Exploration

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Counterpoint, 1999 - History - 444 pages
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Juxtaposing the broad picture of an evolving Germany against the stories of six of his own ancestors, W. Michael Blumenthal seeks to show how 'the unrequited love affair of Germany's Jews with their native country' contributed to the horrors of the Holocaust.Born in Germany in 1926, Blumenthal escaped the Nazis as a teenager with his family in 1939 and grew up with other Jewish refugees in a Shanghai ghetto. From these modest beginnings, he went on to a remarkable professional life in business, government service, and education. Yet questions about his past haunted him, and as the years went by, they occupied his mind with greater urgency.Turning to his family tree for answers, he spent the better part of a decade learning the history of his people. He found rich stories in the lives of six Blumenthal ancestors. Recounting the stories of remarkable individuals within the historical context of three centuries, Blumenthal presents a sweeping portrait of German Jews from the birth of Christianity to the eve of the Holocaust, revealing how Jews of various generations tried but failed to pierce the prejudice that separated them from other Germans.

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The Invisible Wall : The Mystery of the Germans and the Jews

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Blumenthal, former secretary of the Treasury (1977-79), diplomat, and distinguished businessman, explores why German Jews were historically treated so badly by German Christians. Blumenthal himself ... Read full review

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Reading Schindler's List, I am amazed that a group of people can be, throughout history, relegated to living in their own city within a city. This caught my eye today in the bookstore . . . Read full review

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About the author (1999)

Blumenthal was U.S. Secretary of the Treasury in the Carter administration from 1977 to 1979, having served previously as an Ambassador and Deputy Special Representative for trade negotiations under Presidents Kennedy and Johnson.

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