5/18/20 - I signed into a virtual author talk sponsored by the Dallas Museum of Art and the Dallas Holocaust Museum. The guest author, Esther Safran Foer, was born in a displaced persons camp. Only her mother and father had survived the Holocaust from her whole family. Her memoir, I Want You to Know We're Still Here
, is about growing up in the shadow of the Holocaust.
Her goal in writing this was the history and to remember - whether happy or sad - but to have it on paper. She learned her father, in Ukraine, had a previous wife and daughter who were killed. Her mother in Poland, as Nazis arrived, grabbed her winter coat, socks, scissors (she could sew). And Esther writes that as a survivor, her mother always kept a ton of sugar, flour, and cereal in the pantry. The mother always wanted to be prepared for dire circumstances.
p. 100 - Esther realized she was the "hinge" between generations of the family - the link. She herself did not experience the Holocaust, and growing up a bit in the displaced camp was fine for a child - kids to play with, food, etc. Once out of the camp, Esther did see the toll the war took.Her mother was strong and survived. Her father committed suicide when Esther was eight.
Quite a story, and in hearing the author speak, she said she knew she had to become a writer and preserve the stories, put the memories down on paper for herself, for her sons, and for posterity.
I miss live events at the museums, but the power of virtual viewing is better than nothing. I enjoyed hearing Esther Safran Foer speak. Her strength, humor, and family view of history was compelling.
It was worth an on-line ticket ($25.00) and I consider it a donation to the arts. Helps keep my brain from becoming mush.