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This, Too, is for the Best

Simon Krämer and His Stories

Julia Kramer

This book, a graceful narrative interweaving fact and fiction, presents nineteenth-century German-Jewish history as seen through the eyes of Simon Krämer, a Bavarian school-teacher and author whose previously unknown works emerge as valuable pieces of social and cultural history. Using material from his memoirs, his stories, and documents in the German archives, Julia Wood Kramer illustrates three of the major conflicts lacing Simon Krämer's generation: the struggle for civil rights, the desire for German culture, and the resulting need to redefine Judaism and Jewish life. Moving from this larger world to the smaller world of Krämer and his family, the author focuses on the poignant emotions surrounding Krämer's sense of loss of a personal identity for himself, his children emigrating to America, and his fellow Jews, producing a work that is enlightening as well as moving.
Contents: Biography of Jewish schoolteacher/author. Stories in translation illustrate Bavarian village life, and role of teacher in reform. Lively personalized introduction to German and Jewish history, for Jews and non-Jews.