Facing The Extreme: Moral Life in the Concentration Camps


Tzvetan Todorov - 1991
    Drawing on a striking array of documents, Tzvetan Todorov reconstructs a vivid portrait of the conduct of those who ran the camps and those who suffered their outrages. Challenging the widespread view that moral life was extinguished in the extreme circumstances of the camps, he uncovers instead a rich moral universe, composed not of grand acts of heroism but of ordinary gestures of dignity and care, compassion and solidarity.A complex and profound study, Facing the Extreme restores a lost dimension to this anguished history, even as it offers an eloquent plea for the recognition of everyday virtues as a basis for contemporary morality.

Bad Girls: A History of Rebels and Renegades


Caitlin Davies - 2018
    Those who defied expectations about feminine behaviour have long been considered dangerous and unnatural, and ever since the Victorian era they have been removed from public view, locked up and often forgotten about. Many of these women ended up at HM Prison Holloway, the self-proclaimed 'terror to evil-doers' which, until its closure in 2016, was western Europe's largest women's prison. First built in 1852 as a House of Correction, Holloway's women have come from all corners of the UK - whether a patriot from Scotland, a suffragette from Huddersfield, or a spy from the Isle of Wight - and from all walks of life - socialites and prostitutes, sporting stars and nightclub queens, refugees and freedom fighters. They were imprisoned for treason and murder, for begging, performing abortions and stealing clothing coupons, for masquerading as men, running brothels and attempting suicide. In Bad Girls, Caitlin Davies tells their stories and shows how women have been treated in our justice system over more than a century, what crimes - real or imagined - they committed, who found them guilty and why. It is a story of victimization and resistance; of oppression and bravery. From the women who escaped the hangman's noose - and those who didn't - to those who escaped Holloway altogether, Bad Girls is a fascinating look at how disobedient and defiant women changed not only the prison service, but the course of history.

Mad, Bad, and Sad: Women and the Mind Doctors


Lisa Appignanesi - 2007
    From Mary Lamb, sister of Charles, who in the throes of a nervous breakdown turned on her mother with a kitchen knife, to Freud, Jung, and Lacan, who developed the new women-centered therapies, Lisa Appignanesi’s research traces how more and more of the inner lives and emotions of women have become a matter for medics and therapists. Here too is the story of how over the years symptoms and diagnoses have developed together to create fashions in illness and how treatments have succeeded or sometimes failed. Mad, Bad, and Sad takes us on a fascinating journey through the fragile, extraordinary human mind.

Hasidic Tales of the Holocaust


Yaffa Eliach - 1982
    This volume constitutes the first collection of original Hasidic tales to be published in a century."An important work of scholarship and a sudden clear window onto the heretofore sealed world of the Hasidic reaction to the Holocaust. Its true stories and fanciful miracle tales are a profound and often poignant insight into the souls of those who suffered terribly at the hands of the Nazis and who managed somehow to use that very suffering as the raw material for their renewed lives." -- Chaim Potok"A beautiful collection." -- Saul Bellow"Yaffa Eliach provides us with stories that are wonderful and terrible -- true myths. We learn how people, when suffering dying, and surviving can call forth their humanity with starkness and clarity. She employs her scholarly gifts only to connect the tellers of the tales, who bear witness, to the reader who is stunned and enriched." -- Robert J. Lifton"In the extensive literature on the Holocaust, this is a unique book. Through it we can attain a glimpse of the victims' inner life and spiritual resources. Yaffa Eliach has done a superb job." -- Jehuda Reinharz

A Detail Of History: The harrowing true story of a boy who survived the Nazi holocaust


Arek Hersh - 2015
    He takes us into the tragic world imposed on him that robbed him of his childhood. The depth of the tragedy, strength of courage and power of survival will move you and inspire you.Contrary to assertions that the Holocaust years were a mere ‘detail of history’, Arek Hersh gives us a glimpse into the greatest catastrophe that man has ever inflicted on his fellow man.

Mendelevski's Box: A heartwarming and heartbreaking Jewish survivor's journey


Roger Swindells - 2019
    Auschwitz survivor Simon Mendelevski, penniless and unkempt, returns to Amsterdam in a desperate search for his family, friends and neighbours. Simon meets two Dutch women, both of whom have also suffered. One, known to him before the war, is anxious to make amends for what she perceives as a failure by her fellow citizens to protect the Jewish population while easing the pain of her own loss. The other arrived in the city after the bombing of Rotterdam in May 1940 during which she lost a limb.He searches for the address where he and his Jewish family were hidden prior to their arrest by the Nazis for anything tangible connected to his family, and for whoever betrayed them. Only after finding answers can he start to rebuild his life. Scroll up and grab a copy today

Virginia Woolf: The Impact of Childhood Sexual Abuse on Her Life and Work


Louise DeSalvo - 1989
    From Publishers Weekly"Required reading for fans of Woolf, this superlative study traces the impact of early sexual abuse on her personality and her writing," reported PW , calling the work "a major step toward a reappraisal of Woolf's feminism." Photos.Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Anne Frank: The Book, the Life, the Afterlife


Francine Prose - 2009
    Approved by both the Anne Frank House Foundation in Amsterdam and the Anne Frank-Fonds in Basel, run by the Frank family, this work of literary criticism unravels the complex, fascinating story of the diary and effectively makes the case for it being a work of art from a precociously gifted writer.

Inventing the Victorians


Matthew Sweet - 2001
    As Sweet shows us in this brilliant study, many of the concepts that strike us as terrifically new - political spin-doctoring, extravagant publicity stunts, hardcore pornography, anxieties about the impact of popular culture upon children - are Victorian inventions. Most of the pleasures that we imagine to be our own, the Victorians enjoyed first: the theme park, the shopping mall, the movies, the amusement arcade, the crime novel and the sensational newspaper report. They were engaged in a well-nigh continuous search for bigger and better thrills. If Queen Victoria wasn't amused, then she was in a very small minority . . .Matthew Sweet's book is an attempt to re-imagine the Victorians; to suggest new ways of looking at received ideas about their culture; to distinguish myth from reality; to generate the possibility of a new relationship between the lives of nineteenth-century people and our own.

Virginia Woolf: An Inner Life


Julia Briggs - 2005
    She was original, passionate, vivid, dedicated to her art. Yet most writing about her still revolves around her social life and the Bloomsbury set.   In this fresh, absorbing book, Julia Briggs puts the writing back at the center of Woolf’s life, reads that life through her work, and mines the novels themselves to create a compelling new form of biography. Analyzing Woolf’s own commen­tary on the creative process through her letters, diaries, and essays, Julia Briggs has produced a book that is a convincing, moving portrait of an artist, as well as a profound meditation on the nature of creativity.

A Vindication of Love: Reclaiming Romance for the Twenty-first Century


Cristina Nehring - 2009
    . . .This is one of those rare books that could make people think about their intimate lives in a new way." — New York Times Book Review “A rousing defense of imprudent ardor and romantic excess. . . . It’s difficult to deny that [Nehring] is on to something.” — Wall Street JournalA thinking person’s “guide” that makes the case for love in an age both cynical about and fearful of strong passion. Bold and challenging, A Vindication of Love has inspired praise and controversy, and brilliantly reinvigorated the romance debate. A perfect choice for readers of Alain de Botton’s How Proust Can Change Your Life and Pierre Bayard’s How to Talk About Books You Haven’t Read.

The Natural Superiority of Women


Ashley Montagu - 1952
    Making revolutionary arguments upon its first publication in 1953, The Natural Superiority of Women stands as one of the original feminist arguments against biological determinism. An iconoclast, Montagu wielded his encyclopedic knowledge of physical anthropology in critique of the conventional wisdom of women as the "weaker sex," showing how women's biological, genetic, and physical makeup made her not only man's equal, but his superior. Also a humanist, Montagu points to the emotional and social qualities typically ascribed to and devalued in women as being key to just social life and relationships. Subsequent editions of this book have provided additional support for Montagu's arguments, examining both biological and social scientific data of the late 20th century. One of the most broadly renowned and read scholars of our century, Montagu brings out this fifth edition with up-to-date statistics and references. A lengthy foreword by Susan Sperling contextualizes the book within the intellectual histories of feminism and anthropology, noting the huge social and intellectual changes that are spanned in Montagu's life and writing. Montagu's foundational book is an important addition to the library of all gender scholars.

The Ravine: A Family, a Photograph, a Holocaust Massacre Revealed


Wendy Lower - 2021
    The documentation of the Holocaust is vast, but there are virtually no images of a Jewish family at the actual moment of murder, in this case by German officials and Ukrainian collaborators. A Ukrainian shooter’s rifle is inches from a woman's head, obscured in a cloud of smoke. She is bending forward, holding the hand of a barefooted little boy. And—only one of the shocking revelations of Wendy Lower’s brilliant ten-year investigation of this image—the shins of another child, slipping from the woman’s lap.   Wendy Lower’s forensic and archival detective work—in Ukraine, Germany, Slovakia, Israel, and the United States—recovers astonishing layers of detail concerning the open-air massacres in Ukraine. The identities of mother and children, of the killers—and, remarkably, of the Slovakian photographer who openly took the image, as a secret act of resistance—are dramatically uncovered. Finally, in the hands of this brilliant exceptional scholar, a single image unlocks a new understanding of the place of the family unit in the ideology of Nazi genocide.

Bluestockings: The Remarkable Story of the First Women to Fight for an Education


Jane Robinson - 2009
    Using the words of the women themselves, 'Bluestockings' charts the fight for and expansion of higher education for women from 1869 through to the 1930s.

Treblinka Survivor: The Life and Death of Hershl Sperling


Mark S. Smith - 2010
    Hershl Sperling was one of them. He escaped. Why then, 50 years later, did he jump to his death from a bridge in Scotland? The answer lies in a long-forgotten, published account of the Treblinka death camp, written by Hershl Sperling himself in the months after liberation, discovered in his briefcase after his suicide, and reproduced here for the first time. Including previously unpublished photographs, this book traces the life of a man who survived five concentration camps, and details what he had to do to achieve this. Hershl's story, from his childhood in a small Polish town to the bridge in faraway Scotland, is testament to the lasting torment of those very few who survived the Nazis' most efficient and gruesome death factory. The author personally follows in his subject's footsteps from Klobuck, to Treblinka, to Glasgow.