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Auschwitz Explained to My Child Hardcover – September 19, 2002


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How could people do these things to children? What's a roundup? Were the Jews the only ones marked for death? So are all Germans from that time guilty? Why didn't the Jews fight? A 13-year-old Jewish girl asks 80 blunt questions about the Holocaust, and her mother, French Holocaust scholar Wieviorka, answers with the same directness. Originally published in France, and translated here in simple, conversational style, the small, spacious book in question-and-answer format provides an honest introduction to the historical facts and the elemental moral issues. Besides the roles of victims and perpetrators in the ghettos, transports, camps, and gas chambers, the questions persist about the bystanders--individuals and nations--who allowed the Holocaust to happen. What did people know then? There is absolutely no rhetoric or sentimentality, and the informal, conversational tone lends itself to discussion at home or in the classroom. As Wieviorka says, the child asks questions that have haunted philosophers and historians for more than half a century. Hazel Rochman
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Review

This is an important addition to Holocaust education literature.... I will urge my own children to read it. -- Eric A. Johnson, Professor of History and author of Nazi Terror: The Gestapo, Jews, and Ordinary Germans

Without talking down to her readers, Wieviorka directly answers those questions about the Holocaust that young people most frequently ask. -- Susan Bachrach, author of Tell Them We Remember: The Story of the Holocaust
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Series: Explained to My Child
  • Hardcover: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press (September 19, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1569245169
  • ISBN-13: 978-1569245163
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 4.5 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,458,118 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pixelgraph on December 10, 2002
Format: Hardcover
"Auschwitz Explained to My Child" is an excellent starting point for explaining the Holocaust to an older child or an adult. This book is a quick read. It provides an overview of the concentration camps, the ghettos, and gives a very brief history of anti-Semitism. This is not a complete reference but does gives some basic answers to questions including: the difference between a concentration camp and a death camp; an overview of the census, roundups and deportations; information on why all the Jews could not flee Europe; a reference to the Jewish resistance in the Warsaw Ghetto; as well as a brief explanation of the ideology behind Hitler's "Final Solution". This is a great resource for young adults, people who want quick answers, or those who have a short attention span.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By R. Riis VINE VOICE on November 15, 2002
Format: Paperback
A dialogue between a parent and an inquisitive and fairly sophisticated child, this book presents itself as a model for discussing the horrors of the Holocaust with older children. Fair enough. I personally did not care for the selective history exercised in several of the passages, including the only-in-passing reference to other groups persecuted ("20,000 gypsies" is all that is mentioned, when there were in reality millions of gypsies, Catholics, Communists, homosexuals, mentally & physically handicapped and others exterminated), and some stinging criticism of the rest of the world for passively ignoring the situation (omitting some of history's most courageous and altruistic efforts, such as the evacuation of the nation's Jews by the people of Denmark). Read carefully first, then use your own judgement about what to share and what to revise for your own children. Selective or revisionist history is, after all, what books like this are supposed to be fighting against.
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