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From That Place and Time: A Memoir, 1938-1947

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In this powerful and unusual memoir, Lucy S. Dawidowicz tells of her life during the tragic years of 1937-1948, bearing witness to the ruthless destruction of European Yiddish culture during the Second World War.


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In this powerful and unusual memoir, Lucy S. Dawidowicz tells of her life during the tragic years of 1937-1948, bearing witness to the ruthless destruction of European Yiddish culture during the Second World War.

30 review for From That Place and Time: A Memoir, 1938-1947

  1. 5 out of 5

    Charlene

    A memoir of the WWII years in the life of a Jewish American historian. Lucy Dawidowicz was a young woman of 23 when she spent 1938-39 in Vilna, Poland (modern day Lithuania) as a graduate researcher at YIVO, a research center, library and archives for Yiddish culture. At that time, Vilna was known as the "Jerusalem of the North", with a large Jewish population. She leaves hurriedly at the end of August, 1939, just ahead of the invading German army and spends the war years, feeling guilty that he A memoir of the WWII years in the life of a Jewish American historian. Lucy Dawidowicz was a young woman of 23 when she spent 1938-39 in Vilna, Poland (modern day Lithuania) as a graduate researcher at YIVO, a research center, library and archives for Yiddish culture. At that time, Vilna was known as the "Jerusalem of the North", with a large Jewish population. She leaves hurriedly at the end of August, 1939, just ahead of the invading German army and spends the war years, feeling guilty that her American passport allowed her to escape the death and destruction that came to Vilna and all of Eastern Europe. As an employee for YIVO Institute for Jewish Research in New York City, she is privy to knowledge of the Holocaust as it happens and then spends several post-war years in Germany, working in the DP (displaced persons) camps and later in the Offenbach Archival Depot, sorting looted books and sending the remnants of the Vilna's library and archival collections back to YIVO's surviving branch in New York City. Author writes from her own perspective, as an American but also as someone very aware of what was lost in terms of Jewish European life and culture. One can feel her sorrow, despair and anger. Almost all of her friends and co-workers from Vilna were lost. This memoir was a major source for 2 recent books that I've read, The Book Thieves: The Nazi Looting of Europe's Libraries and especially The Book Smugglers: Partisans, Poets and the Race to Save Jewish Treasures. That helped me have more background to understand the time & place; this book gave me even more appreciation for the people involved in the story.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Alixandra Gould

    I don't expect this memoir to be interesting to anyone not already interested in the time and place on which she is writing, namely Vilna in the 1930s. But if you have read or do know about Young Vilna then it is amazing to watch them go about their daily lives as the Nazis close in on them. It just doesn't seem real. And good luck finding this book outside of a library. I don't expect this memoir to be interesting to anyone not already interested in the time and place on which she is writing, namely Vilna in the 1930s. But if you have read or do know about Young Vilna then it is amazing to watch them go about their daily lives as the Nazis close in on them. It just doesn't seem real. And good luck finding this book outside of a library.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Dan

  4. 5 out of 5

    Liz Strauss

  5. 5 out of 5

    Peggy

  6. 4 out of 5

    Barry Harris

  7. 4 out of 5

    Courtney

  8. 4 out of 5

    aistė

  9. 4 out of 5

    Sam Baron

  10. 5 out of 5

    Dr Diane K Drummond

  11. 5 out of 5

    Karen Smith

  12. 5 out of 5

    Meryl

  13. 5 out of 5

    Howard

  14. 4 out of 5

    Indre Bruzaite

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mark

  16. 5 out of 5

    Maureen Carter

  17. 5 out of 5

    Eden Glaser

  18. 5 out of 5

    Leigh

  19. 4 out of 5

    sofía aguilar

  20. 5 out of 5

    Anne

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shira

  22. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

  23. 4 out of 5

    Petra-X is down to 75 books awaiting reviews

  24. 5 out of 5

    Mary Narkiewicz

  25. 4 out of 5

    Maureen

  26. 4 out of 5

    Anna

  27. 4 out of 5

    Nancy

  28. 4 out of 5

    Laima

  29. 4 out of 5

    Gabriella

  30. 4 out of 5

    M

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