Ghosts of Home: The Afterlife of Czernowitz in Jewish Memory

Ghosts of Home: The Afterlife of Czernowitz in Jewish Memory

by Marianne Hirsch, Leo Spitzer
Ghosts of Home: The Afterlife of Czernowitz in Jewish Memory

Ghosts of Home: The Afterlife of Czernowitz in Jewish Memory

by Marianne Hirsch, Leo Spitzer

Paperback(First Edition)

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In modern-day Ukraine, east of the Carpathian Mountains, there is an invisible city. Known as Czernowitz, the “Vienna of the East” under the Habsburg empire, this vibrant Jewish-German Eastern European culture vanished after World War II—yet an idealized version lives on, suspended in the memories of its dispersed people and passed down to their children like a precious and haunted heirloom. In this original blend of history and communal memoir, Marianne Hirsch and Leo Spitzer chronicle the city's survival in personal, familial, and cultural memory. They find evidence of a cosmopolitan culture of nostalgic lore—but also of oppression, shattered promises, and shadows of the Holocaust in Romania. Hirsch and Spitzer present the first historical account of Jewish Czernowitz in the English language and offer a profound analysis of memory's echo across generations.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780520271258
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 07/26/2011
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 392
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Marianne Hirsch is William Peterfield Trent Professor of English and Comparative Literature, and Co-Director of the Institute of Research on Women and Gender, at Columbia University. She is the author of Family Frames: Photography, Narrative, and Postmemory, among other books. Leo Spitzer is Kathe Tappe Vernon Professor of History Emeritus at Dartmouth College, and the author of many books, most recently Hotel Bolivia: A Culture of Memory in a Refuge from Nazism.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

Part One
“We would not have come without you,” 1998
1 / “Where are you from?”
2 / Vienna of the East
3 / Strolling the Herrengasse
4 / The Idea of Czernowitz
5 / “Are we really in the Soviet Union?”
6 / The Crossroads

Part Two
The Darker Side, 2000
7 / Maps to Nowhere
8 / The Spot on the Lapel
9 / “There was never a camp here!”
10 / “This was once my home”

Part Three
Ghosts of Home, 2006
11 / The Persistence of Czernowitz
12 / The Tile Stove

Epilogue, 2008
Chernivtsi at Six Hundred

Selected Readings

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"[This] monumental book . . . is a stunning marriage of intellectual curiosity and personal search. [It] reads with the poignancy of memoir, yet in a collective voice. . . . The overarching authorial voice is nuanced and reflective but also informed. "—Pri's the World

"Hirsch and Spitzer expose the complex layers that inform our understanding of the past."—Jewish Book World

"Unique . . . Ghosts of Home collects the fragments of one place and provides us with an artifact that is as close as we will ever come to 'perfect rest.'"—Tikkun Magazine

"An interesting volume."—German Studies Review

"The ability to observe, evaluate, and contextualize habits and specific objects is one of the greatest strengths of this book."—Austrian History Yearbook

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