Monthly Archives: August 2013

Shabbat-August 30, 2013

kiddsishcup2

honey pot

Shabbat Day

Skies of other worlds

In the blue-bright air,

Sides of houses

Edge eternity.

Clay-red roofs

Where pigeons – mincing – walk,

Fly the doves – the whir and flutter

Of their soaring wings.

Soundless the yellow butterfly

At its play.

Winds lift white clouds

And sift the sand

From earth-bound stones -

Exalted the light

Of this dazzling Day,

Yet strangely close to home.

-Dobra Levitt

Shabbat Shalom!

© Copyright 2007 – 2013 – All Rights Reserved – No permission is given or allowed to reuse my photography, book reviews, writings, or my poetry in any form/format without my express written consent/permission.

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Lorri M. Review: We Were Europeans

wewereeuropeans We Were Europeans: A Personal History of a Turbulent Century, by Werner M. Loval, is book that portrays an incredible, personal, family/ancestral journey, both before World War II, and post war.

Loval came from a respected, well off, German-Jewish family, and before the war they were treated with dignity within their community. That all ended beginning on January 30,1933, when Hitler was sworn in as Chancellor of Germany. F rom that point forward, Loval’s story takes on dimensions that are precarious and horrendous, as he and his family fight to survive.

He and his sister eventually became part of the Kindertransport to England, while his parents eventually were able to escape to Ecuador, via Siberia and Japan, where the entire family was reunited. The family emigrated to America after the war. Loval eventually emigrated to Israel and played an intricate and highly professional role within the Diplomatic Service for the State of Israel. His religious foundations were strong, and he was involved in the Reform Jewish movement, and played a high profile role within it.

To say I am impressed with the format would be an understatement. I am in awe of We Were Europeans and the way Loval presents it to us. He infuses the pages with incredible documentation, amazing photographs, documents and maps, that enhance the pages of this compelling memoir, adding more drama to the presented depictions of the turbulence. From personal reflections and stories, the pages hold eye witness accounts to history as it happens, through Loval’s writing and presentation of supported evidence and documents.



Loval’s endeavors and arduous research has brought the reader into the depths of the Nazi turbulence, adversity and shocking horrors that overtook Europe during Hitler’s reign. First-hand accounts abound, and Loval leaves nothing to the imagination through his stark imagery. From correspondence to diaries during the haunting war years and afterwards, to diaries and letters during the Six Day War and so much more, the reader is painted vivid pictures of family inspiration during time of crisis. The post war events are just as compelling and intensely stated, as Loval involves himself in trying to get restitution for property owned by his family.

Loval and his family lived their lives to the fullest with a positive attitude, no matter the extreme harshness of their circumstances, no matter how far spread, at varied points in time, the family separation was across the global perspective. The illuminating photographs, documents and word-paintings are incredible testimonies to eras gone by, to familial bonds, to the determination and strength to persevere and survive, both during and after World War II.

We Were Europeans is a book of extreme importance and historical value for historians, for researchers, genealogists, for those who are interested in the Holocaust and World War II, and for those individuals, in general, who want to learn more about the turbulent times depicted within the pages. The intensity of the memoir is beyond imagination and comprehension. It is a powerful statement and testimony, not only to the decades, events and circumstances depicted, but to the Loval family unit. Their story is extremely inspiring, and I highly recommend We Were Europeans, by Werner M. Loval to everyone.

© Copyright 2007 – 2013 – All Rights Reserved – No permission is given or allowed to reuse my photography, book reviews, writings, or my poetry in any form/format without my express written consent/permission.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Holocaust/Genocide, Jewish History, Judaism, Lorri's Blog, Memoirs, Non-Fiction

Lorri M. News

clouds meet sea

A bowl found during archaeological dig shows a 2,700 year-old Hebrew inscription.

Movie of Warsaw Uprising shows historical footage, and has been colorized for effect and possible links to those still searched for.

Food spices found in 6,100 year-old crock pot.

I so love this quote:

Every book is a quotation; and every house is a quotation out of all forests, and mines, and stone quarries; and every man is a quotation from all his ancestors. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Earthlings wave to the Cassini orbiter
.

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Lorri M. Review: The Enemy at His Pleasure

the-enemy-at-his-pleasure The Enemy at His Pleasure: A Journey Through the Jewish Pale of Settlement During World War I, by S. Ansky, translated by Joachim Neugroschel, is an intense, horrific, violent and incredible book depicting the events of Ansky’s travels through the Pale of Settlement during World War I. His travels and writings were an effort to try and bring medical help, food and money to the communities of Jews, living in shtetls, on the front lines. It is as graphically worded as a book of this type can get.

Written as a journalist might write a diary, Ansky’s accounts leave nothing left unsaid, no events colored over with fluff, and we, the readers, are left “watching” the evil through the vivid word images of brutality, destruction, rape, bodily slashing, murder, mob mentality, mass-murder, and the affects on the Jewish communities in the shtetls from the events of the nauseating horrors of anti-semitism.

I won’t quote from the book, because one passage alone wouldn’t be sufficient to render the scope of the atrocities and horror. How can I choose one, out of so many? For me it is impossible, and would diminish the content of the book, down to that one blurb. One must read this in order to grasp the intensity of the compelling events.


The Enemy at His Pleasure
is a compelling read, and if you are prone to having a weak stomach from graphic word content, then I suggest you read this with that in mind. Do read it, because it will open your eyes to the accounts and sickening events that took place during the turbulent time when Russian, Austrian and German armies overtook the small Jewish shtetls catching and trapping the Jews in the middle.

The word images are vividly depicted. It is a look at history you will not soon forget. S. Ansky wrote what he saw, leaving out nothing, including every minute detail of what appeared before him. If the future could have been foretold, it could be said that these World War I horrors that occurred were major precursors that foreshadowed things to come in World War II.

August 19, 2013 – 13 Elul, 5773

© Copyright 2007 – 2013 – All Rights Reserved – No permission is given or allowed to reuse my photography, book reviews, writings, or my poetry in any form/format without my express written consent/permission.

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Sunday Scenes – August 18, 2013

bw sunset

As the High Holy Days draw near, during my reflections, I have thought about Marcel Marceau. Marcel Marceau died on Yom Kippur September 22, 2007. He was famous and well-loved for his pantomime act. With each performance, he tried to spread the word of silence through his body language and expressiveness. Silence, he felt, was another form of language, a language that could vividly express what words could not.

He felt silence and the art of pantomime could blend together, creating scenes reflective of humor and of intensity, of good versus evil, of man’s place in the scheme of things.

I remember seeing him on TV when I was an adolescent, and never knew that this man, this man with the most expressive eyes and eyebrows I had ever seen (often exhibiting pain), was Jewish. Not that it mattered, because he spoke to me through his illuminating movements, and I was enthralled, mesmerized and held captive each time I saw him. His ability to portray the fragility of life was incredible, brilliant and masterful, and he held my attention, and my eyes were glued to the screen.

Like many other individuals, I did not know that he had joined the French Resistance, along with his brother. I did not realize his father was deported and died in Auschwitz, and he never truly was able to get over that fact. I did not realize he was born Marcel Mangel, and he and his brother began using the surname Marceau in order to not bring attention to themselves during a time when Jews were deemed unnecessary beings. I did not find out until I was an older adult.

The man that moved me emotionally, as a child, still moved me to tears watching him, as an adult. Tears flowed, along with an enormous lump in my throat, when I first realized the extreme circumstances he endured, and sacrifices he made in order to rescue Jews, mainly children. His miming and teaching of silence to children during World War II helped save many children, as their ability to remain quiet during escaping from France to Switzerland and other locations became a huge factor in their safety. They had to learn to communicate in silence, and miming became their form of conversation.

I could barely swallow, never mind breath, upon hearing the news of his past. Where was I! How could I not have known! He was a man of conscious, a man of dedication to the cause of humanity, a man who touched so many lives throughout his lifetime, and a man I will not soon forget.

If you were to ask me, I could not articulate why his creative beauty, his ability to evoke emotion, and why his life’s history has affected me, but there are some instances that need no answers. It is what it is…

Since his death on Yom Kippur, 10 Tishrei, 5768, it has been impossible for me not to think of him during the month of Elul and during the High Holy Days.

I will remember him as a light of intense silence, silence that saved innocent children during World War II, silence that broke through boundaries with resounding precision, silence that illuminated the hearts of others.

I have designed my style pantomimes as white ink drawings on black backgrounds, so that man’s destiny appears as a thread lost in an endless labyrinth… I have tried to shed some gleams of light on the shadow of man startled by his anguish. Marcel Marceau

May he be resting in peace. May his memory be for a Loving Blessing. Zikhrono Livrakha.

Here is a link to a photograph of Marcel Marceau’s gravesite if you choose to view it.

Links regarding Marcel Marceau:

Marcel Marceau Wikipedia.

How I Worked in the French Resistance and Created Bip as a Figure of Hope.


Mayonnaise and the French Resistance
.

A Tribute to Marcel Marceau .
Marcel Dies at 84.

Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem, to be much adult material, as far as books are concerned, regarding Marcel Marceau. Most seem to be geared towards children in relation to pantomime. Some that were published decades ago, are out of print.

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Friday News – August 16, 2013

tree view

I finished reading Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots, by Jessica Soffer.

I saw the film, The Artist and the Model. It was filmed entirely in black and white, which only emphasized the setting, emotions and story line. It moves slow, which for me was nice, and allowed the viewer to grasp the emotional content through the body language of the actors.

I am in the middle of reading The Lute and the Scars, by Danilo Kis.

Visit Leora, at Sketching Out, to browse through the links for the August Jewish Book Carnival.

Hannah has some lovely photographs and information regarding the American Memorial in Chateuu-Thierry.

This man is building a Sukkah out of “homeless signs” he bought. How clever, how inspiring, and filled with Mitzvot!

Fire in My Heart: The Story of Hannah Senesh is now on exhibit at the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center.

Overweight Sensation: The Life and Comedy of Allan Sherman, by Mark Cohen, looks to be an interesting read in more ways than one.


Read here
, in the Jewish Observer, to learn about Edyie Gorme, who died at the age of 84. You can also learn about a Treblinka survivor, along with a story about a German who saved Jews during World War II.

Sorry about the update…I needed to correct something.

August 16m 2013 – 10 Elul, 5773

© Copyright 2007 – 2013 – All Rights Reserved – No permission is given or allowed to reuse my photography, book reviews, writings, or my poetry in any form/format without my express written consent/permission.

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