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Author Topic: The Jews of Bocki
Wilf Day
Babbler # 3276

posted 30 September 2004 10:36 AM      Profile for Wilf Day     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A truly powerful and moving piece on the Holocaust. I had not previously read of a community of 750 having only a single survivor. The fact that the survivor's son was able to unearth so much of its story is a great tribute to the tenacity of the human spirit. I will ensure that my daughter and son, whose generation finds it increasingly difficult to imagine the full impact of the Holocaust, read this today. They will not, I'm sure, be alone.
From: Port Hope, Ontario | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
Babbler # 2534

posted 30 September 2004 11:25 AM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Thanks for sharing this - since the Globe created its two-class website I've stopped perusing it online, and I refuse to buy it as a result of their decision!

Indeed, in the case of the Shoah - and more recent genocides - so many entire communities were utterly wiped out or left but a handful of traumatised survivors attempting to make new lives somehow - that unearthing the past of individuals, families, social groups and communities is an essential part of the process of remembering - and a key role of those of us devoted to "history from below" (histoire subalterne in French). Not just an undifferentiated mass of murdered humans but many different lives who were cut short by genocide.

For similar work of remembering on a more recent genocide, view the film "The Haunted Land" about the genocidal massacres of Mayan villagers in Guatemala.

An important aspect of the piece is the survivors' unwillingness to speak of the horrors inflicted on their families, friends or communities, whether as small as Bocki or as large as Lodz or Warsaw. Post-traumatic stress, having to forget in order to live, a desire not to be "singled out" as a "victim" - there are many reasons for this. They make the task of remembering urgent while there are still survivors capable of telling their story or evidence of their lives.

From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
aka Mycroft
Babbler # 6640

posted 30 September 2004 02:19 PM      Profile for aka Mycroft     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I can't remember the name of it but there was a very powerful documentary a few years ago that followed a Holocaust survivor on his first visit back to the Polish village he lived in as a boy. He and his family hid for the much of the war in a nearby forest and were helped by some of the villagers but were ultimately betrayed to the Gestapo by one of their neighbours. The film followed the survivor (and his son) as they talked to old villagers to try to piece together what had happened.
From: Toronto | Registered: Aug 2004  |  IP: Logged

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