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Sidonia, an abandoned gypsy child, is raised by socialist foster parents in a small town in Austria during the 1930s, until the Nazi regime takes control, and the power of the government and the prejudice of her neighbors are brought to bear against her and her family
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Text: English (translation)
Original Language: German
Austrian author Hackl ( Aurora's Motive ) unfolds this absorbing, fact-based tale in terse, controlled prose. In 1933, the year the Nazis come to power, a dark-skinned infant girl is left wrapped in rags on the hospital steps in Steyr, Austria, her name, Sidonia Adlersburg, written on a scrap of paper beside her. Her mother is found to be an unwed gypsy, thus a member of a group that within the decade will be rounded up as "foreign vermin." Sidonia is adopted by Hans Breirather, a laborer once jailed as a Social Democrat, and his wife, Josepha. Determined, brave and independent, the Breirathers weather the terrible Nazi years of political persecution and spying neighbors, defending Sidonia against detractors who call her "that black thing." Finally, two officious social workers, acting "in the child's best interest," place Sidonia in housing arranged for gypsies. The child's surveillance by the Youth Welfare Office and the Magistrate's Office, the pains taken by a schoolmaster to record her tiny faults and the plight of the gypsies are rendered here in wrenching detail.
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Book Description Jonathan Cape, 1992. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0224029010