Etty Hillesum: An Interrupted Life and Letters from Westerbork

Etty Hillesum: An Interrupted Life and Letters from Westerbork

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by Etty Hillesum
     
 

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For the first time, Etty Hillesum's diary and letters appear together to give us the fullest possible portrait of this extraordinary woman in the midst of World War II. In the darkest years of Nazi occupation and genocide, Etty Hillesum remained a celebrant of life whose lucid intelligence, sympathy, and almost impossible gallantry were themselves a form of inner

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Overview

For the first time, Etty Hillesum's diary and letters appear together to give us the fullest possible portrait of this extraordinary woman in the midst of World War II. In the darkest years of Nazi occupation and genocide, Etty Hillesum remained a celebrant of life whose lucid intelligence, sympathy, and almost impossible gallantry were themselves a form of inner resistance. The adult counterpart to Anne Frank, Hillesum testifies to the possibility of awareness and compassion in the face of the most devastating challenge to one's humanity. She died at Auschwitz in 1943 at the age of twenty-nine.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Remarkable . . . What made life meaningful to Etty was the rare combination of erotic, spiritual, and intellectual passions that made up her 'thinking heart.' A truly great book.” —The Washington Post Book World
School Library Journal
YAHillesum was in her mid-20s at the time of the Holocaust; her diaries consist mainly of musings about the confusion, perplexities, and struggles all around her and mature into a clear philosophy of love of God and all humanity. Her most intimate thoughts are played out at length, but perseverance results in a rewarding view of humanity. The young woman's letters (the second part of the book) reveal a great deal more detail about the day-to-day life at the transit camp of Westerbork (the last stop before Auschwitz). Here, individual people come into view more clearly, and the horrors and atrocities facing the Jews at that time emerge. That Hillesum could rise above hate and generalization in the midst of such horror and evil reveals a tremendous inner strength. Her courage, determination, and faith reveal her amazing spirit. An inspirational reading experience.Bunni Union, Geauga West Library, Chesterland, OH

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780805050875
Publisher:
Picador
Publication date:
11/28/1996
Edition description:
Revised
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
133,030
Product dimensions:
5.55(w) x 8.21(h) x 1.11(d)

Meet the Author

Etty Hillesum died at Auschwitz in 1943. She was 29.

Eva Hoffman is the author of Lost in Translation and Exit into History.

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