One Family: Before, During, and After the Holocaust, Third Edition, written by the son of a survivor, revisits and expands the author’s research on his relatives while they lived in Poland, France, Denmark and the U.S. Kolin draws on newly available secondary and archival sources, successfully providing readers with a dynamic portrait of this one family as a microcosm of what happened to families throughout Europe during the Holocaust. He explores the identities of his relatives not only as Jews, but also as workers in specific sectors, from the slaughterhouses of Warsaw to the leather workers and pocketbook makers of Paris. He traces the political and military experiences of family members and how each family wrestled with the decision of whether or not to emigrate and whether or not to be politically active. The author describes how his relatives responded to, and coped with, the unfolding of anti-Jewish measures in Poland and France. He then traces how that response, whether it was flight and/or resistance, affected their ultimate fate.
Andrew Kolin is professor of political science at Hilbert College.
List of Illustrations
Introduction: A Justification for a Third Edition; Uncovering New Material
OneFrom Kolnica to Warsaw
TwoPolitical Struggles and Emigration
ThreeCementing Ties to Poland and France
SixThe Holocaust: Poland
SevenThe Holocaust France
EightAftermath: Loss and Recovery
About the Author
One Family: Before and During the Holocaust tells the moving and complex story of one Jewish family who lived in Poland for generations, who were scattered throughout Europe and the US as anti-Semitism gripped Europe. It is both deeply personal and also broadly relevant, offering tantalizing capsule histories of Jewish socialist organizing in Poland, Jewish communities in Copenhagen and Paris, and even far right attacks on American Jews between the wars. The author has undertaken an extraordinary excavation project that sheds new light on the Jewish diaspora and the tragic history of the twentieth century.
An intensely moving and meticulously researched account of how one Jewish family lived and died in Poland and France. A powerful and compelling work of social and cultural history.
Andrew Kolin is to be applauded for his scrupulous investigation in unearthing his family history in Poland and France before and during the German occupation during World War II. The minute details discovered by Kolin will be of interest to readers who want to know about the efficiency of the Nazi machinery in the deportation and systematic murder of Jews and dissidents. Kolin’s narrative is gripping, filled with depictions of survival under grotesque barbaric conditions. His description of the ability of family members who survived in overcoming enormous challenges is both heartrending and inspirational. The attentiveness to detail in his exploration of family history by second-generation members—such as the author himself—will be a role-model for others in the post-Holocaust generation.