GENERATION EXODUS: The Fate of Young Jewish Refugees from Nazi Germany
"For them it was a question of swimming or sinking. For some of this generation it can certainly be said that but for Hitler and the Nazis they would never have gone as far in life as they did." Noted historian (Weimar: A Cultural History; A History of Zionism) and current chairman of the Research Council of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C., Laqueur writes about a generation of German Jews who were in their teens or early 20s when they fled Germany and Austria between 1933 and 1941—a generation of refugees (of which he is a member) that would eventually include a disproportionately large number of successful, even world-renowned, men and women. Drawing on interviews and published and unpublished memoirs, he relates a series of representative anecdotes that testify to an astonishing variety of experiences and serve as a valuable contribution to Holocaust literature. Although large numbers of Jews went to Palestine, Great Britain and the U.S., others, like the author Ruth Prawer-Jhabvala, found refuge in India and elsewhere. Many of the survivors were forever broken by the experience, while others, like Henry Kissinger, were bolstered in their resolve to succeed and did so eminently. Some helped build the nation of Israel, and still others tried to deny their heritage after the war. Laqueur makes the point that luck and accident had an important role in their individual survival. (Apr. 20)
Forecast: Though this book comes from a relatively small university press, Laqueur is a major Holocaust historian and editor-in-chief of Yale's Holocaust Encyclopedia, a notable reference volume also coming out in April; sales of Generation Exodus should piggyback on that.
Release date: 03/01/2001