Jewish people in Warsaw in the years 1939–1943

Chief editor: Józef Kazimierski, editors: Jan Grabowski, Marta Jaszczyńska, Danuta Skorwider

Jewish people in Warsaw in the years 1939–1943

Life-Fight-Holocaust

Cover
softcover
Publisher
JHI, NDAP, DiG, Deutsches Historisches Instytut Warschau

„Documents of the Warsaw Jewish Council and its German superiors constitute a unique collection, not only because of the terrible circumstances accompanying its creation, but also because of the character of the materials included in this issue. From the first to the last page we are struck by the official dryness of form and impersonality of accounts, letters, tables and reports. However, when we start reading more carefully, when we make some effort to read between the lines, we will stand face to face with utter horror and despair of living conditions of the ghetto. Seemingly drained off blood, pain, fear and sweat, the documents of the Jewish Council cannot cover up the size of the tragedy of the Warsaw Jews. The numbers show thousands of dying of typhus, taken to the gas chambers of Treblinka, or dead because of cold and hunger. Letters and reports of the head of the Council, written in bland prose, inform us about usually unsuccessful measures to beg the German authorities to make even minor concessions: little bit more bread for the poorest, a few cubic meters of firewood, a few passes for the sick or postponement of payment of next ruining tribute. Equally dramatic is — from the perspective of years — impersonal, almost cynical tone of circulars, orders and instructions coming from the Office of the Commissioner for the Jewish Quarter [Komissar für den jüdischen Wohnbezirk in Warschau], whose head had been Heinz Auerswald since May 1941. Therefore, the source materials are official records of the life and death of the third largest Polish city — the Warsaw Ghetto. "

(Jan Grabowski)

 

The included CD contains extensive documentation which is an integral part of the book.

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