A Holocaust Crossroads: Jewish Women and Children in Ravensbrück, edited by Irith Dublon-Knebel (London:Vallentine Mitchell, 2010), brings together the scholarly findings of a German-Israeli research team, which examines the plight of the Jewish women and children in Ravensbrück through the lens of sociology and history.
This book on the Ravensbrück women’s concentration camp will be of particular interest to scholars and researchers who are looking for specific details regarding the Jewish women incarcerated there, such as lists and tables of how many were there and when, where they came from, what maladies they suffered. In addition, there are discussions regarding what kind of forced labor they performed, and how their experiences in general compared to those of women in other camps. Some chapters include a focus on the children held in the camp and other chapters present interesting case studies of individual Jewish women imprisoned in Ravensbrück. The history and workings of the women’s concentration camp are also explored, including the system of record-keeping in the camp, the external camp in Malchow, the death marches, and the rescue and survival of some women.
While survivors’ testimonies are presented in this important book, they are used primarily to enhance the data provided by the chapter authors. This book complements The Jewish Women Prisoners of Ravensbrück – Who Were They? by Judith Buber Agassi (Oxford: Oneworld, 2007) and it is an excellent companion to The Jewish Women of Ravensbrück Concentration Camp by Rochelle G. Saidel (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 2004). With the publication of books such as this latest one edited by Dr. Irith Dublon-Knebel, as well as the earlier works appearing on the subject by Dr. Judith Buber Agassi and by Dr. Rochelle G. Saidel, we are beginning to more fully understand precisely what Jewish women, who were at the very bottom of Nazi concentration camp hierarchy, had to endure in Ravensbrück.
-- Dr. Sonja M. Hedgepeth
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