Tag Archives: Holocaust

“Out of Germany”: Flossenbürg Concentration Camp, Jakub’s World (2005), and the Commemoration of the Holocaust in the United States

This essay addresses survivor stories as formulations of Holocaust memory in the U.S. More specifically, it focuses on the former concentration camp at Flossenbürg in southern Germany. Compared to places like Dachau and Buchenwald in Germany or Auschwitz and Treblinka in Poland, Flossenbürg is often absent from or—if present at all—marginalized in the public and scholarly discourse of Holocaust memory. The heavily autobiographical novel Jakub’s World (2005) tells the story of Jakub Szabmacher, a Jewish boy who is taken from his home in Poland by the Nazis and is eventually interned at Flossenbürg. He survives many months of deprivation and hardship in the concentration camp until U.S. forces liberate it in April 1945; orphaned and homeless, he eventually relocates to the U.S., yet returns to the site of his suffering many times.

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Memorial Candles: Beauty as Consolation

Do we ever get used to the feelings of loss? Time supposedly heals all wounds. Does it really? Or do we take that time and take that loss and turn it into something else, something that takes the shape and the form of our loss. Is this perhaps the source of the deepest art? Is it the art that actually gives our lives meaning? There are clearly feelings that are beyond comprehension. It is these feelings that are put into the music, poetry, painting, photography, prose, and theater that enrich our lives, and that are addressed in this book. The women in “Daughters of Absence” all have one thing in common: as daughters of Holocaust survivors they have found a strong voice through their work. For these creative women, their work has been both life force and life saver.

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