Frank Dabba Smith My Secret Camera

ISBN 13: 9780152023065

My Secret Camera

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9780152023065: My Secret Camera

In 1940 as Nazi troops rolled across Europe, countless Jewish families were forced from their homes into isolated ghettos, labor and concentration camps. In the Lodz Ghetto in Poland, Mendel Grossman refused to surrender to the suffering around him, secretly taking thousands of heartrending photographs documenting the hardship and the struggle for survival woven through the daily lives of the people imprisoned with him. Someday, he hoped, the world would learn the truth. My Secret Camera is his legacy. ·An important historical record of life during the Holocaust ·Features an introduction by Howard Jacobson, author of The Very Model of a Man and Roots Schmoots: Journeys Among Jews ·Features 17 beautifully composed photographs

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About the Author:

Mendel Grossman (1913-1945) was born into a Hasidic family in Lodz, Poland. He died on a forced march just days before the Germans surrendered to the Allies.

Frank Dabba Smith is a writer, a rabbi, and a freelance photographer. He was born in California and now makes his home in London.

From Publishers Weekly:

Grossman, a Polish Jew, was forced into the Lodz ghetto at its inception in May 1940. For the next four years, until the ghetto was destroyed, Grossman used his privileges as a photographer for the ghetto administration to covertly take thousands of pictures documenting life in the ghetto. The 17 photographs on these pages show the suffering so copiously described by historians and survivorsAsoldiers march through emptied streets; freighted with bundles and rucksacks, heavily dressed people head toward what is surely deportation; a solitary child clutches a wire fence. They are heartbreaking. But even more wrenching are the photos of less iconic scenes. Readers see a team of workers smiling as they bake Passover matzoh and teenagers laughing at some delicious joke. Unfortunately, Smith, a rabbi and a photographer, is not content to let the photos speak for themselves, and he scripts a brief narrative, delivered as if by Grossman. It is numbingly formulaic ("My own pain does not matter. I must show what the Nazis are doing to my people. My pictures will tell the real story, even if I die"), and although he explains how the photographs survived despite Grossman's death, nowhere does he comment on how he arrived at his text, for instance, if the names he assigns some figures are real. For all his piety, his commentary underserves Grossman's work. Ages 8-up. (Apr.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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