Trim: 6⅛ x 9¼
978-0-7618-5040-3 • Hardback • March 2010 • $96.00 • (£74.00)
978-0-7618-5011-3 • Paperback • March 2010 • $38.99 • (£30.00)
978-0-7618-5012-0 • eBook • March 2010 • $35.00 • (£27.00)
Irene Levin Berman, a native of Norway, has lived in the United States most of her adult life. She is a professional translator of Scandinavian languages and has co-translated seven plays by Henrik Ibsen, Norway's renowned playwright. 'We Are Going to Pick Potatoes': Norway and the Holocaust, The Untold Story, which was first written in Norwegian by Ms. Berman and published in Norway in 2008, was translated into English by the author herself. To learn more about the book, and to get updates on Ms. Berman's latest appearances and events, please visit www.norwayandtheholocaust.com.
Introduction: Why Norway Wasn't Too Small
Chapter 1: The Escape
Chapter 2: Refugees in Exile
Chapter 3: Those Who Came First - The Levin Family
Chapter 4: Those Who Came First - The Selikowitz Family
Chapter 5: The Family that 'Disappeared'
Chapter 6: War and Holocaust
Chapter 7: The Silence
Chapter 8: Return from Exile
Chapter 9: Learning How to be a Norwegian Jew
Chapter 10: On Marrying a Jew
Chapter 11: Life in America
Chapter 12: The Myth about the Danish King
Chapter 13: Identity
Chapter 14: The Journey Into the Past
Irene [Levin] Berman tells an important and— for most Americans— unknown story about the destiny of the Norwegian Jews during WW II. Being herself a Holocaust survivor, her style is emotionally very strong, though factual and sober. This comprehensive, moving and heart-rending book, with a welcome underlying optimism in spite of traumatic experiences, deserves a wide circle of readers in the U.S.A, far beyond those of Norwegian descent.
— Arnfinn Moland, director, Norway's Resistance Museum
The story of the effort and extent to which the Nazi war machine would reach out in order to annihilate even the most remote Jewish family. The story of indifference and courage, of despair and hope, of silence and action. A very Jewish and very human story which should be told and listened to.
— Michael Melchior, Chief Rabbi of Norway, Former Cabinet Minister of Israel
Irene Levin Berman has written a powerful, deeply moving book about a people, a place, and a time unfamiliar to many Americans. It is a story that should be widely known and remembered by all.
— Edward P. Gallagher, President, The American-Scandinavian Foundation
Contemplating such a stomach-turning subject matter alongside the endearing intimate family details you offer is not easy, but the opportunity to learn a little about your remarkable family is a blessing to cherish. It is unimaginable to me the incredible courage, commitment, wisdom, and fortitude you had to muster to start and complete this work, and to render its content so thoughtfully and effectively.
— Nik Sten, Director, Norwegian Club of San Francisco
— Benjamin Ivry; Foreword Reviews, June 2010
It wasn't until 2005 that Irene Levin Berman forced herself to examine what it meant to her to be a Holocaust survivor. Even after so many years, she strongly identified as a Jew and a Norwegian, as well as a United States citizen, but not having been in a ghetto or camp, she didn't feel 'worthy' of the label 'survivor.' In 'We Are Going To Pick Potatoes': Norway and The Holocaust, The Untold Story, she describes what happened to the Jews of Norway during the Holocaust, focusing mainly on her particular family; this is as much an autobiography as an account of flight and resettlement in hospitable Sweden. A child of four when she was told 'We are going to pick potatoes,' she and her family embarked on a tortuously dangerous journey across the Alps to reach neutral Sweden, just missing the Gestapo roundup of November 26th for the purpose of mass arrests. It was 1942, and the Norwegian Jews who remained in Norway did not realize the danger they were in....Although this is primarily an account of the fate of the author's extended family during the Holocaust, it is nevertheless an important addition to the library of survivor testimony since not much is known about Norwegian Jews during this period.
— Jewish Book World
This ‘untold story' about what happened to Norwegian Jews during the Holocaust deserves to be told—and now it is.
— Elie Wiesel, Nobel Laureate