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Language and Culture

A Transcending Bond- Essays and Memoirs by American Germanists of Austro-Jewish Descent


Charles S. Merrill and Susan E. Cernyak-Spatz

In March 1938, Hitler easily moved his grand design by «annexing» Austria. This «bloodless» coup introduces one of history's most extravagant bloodlettings, the systematic extirpation of, among others, nearly the entirety of central and western Europe's Jewish population. Literally within moments of this Annexation, the contributors of this volume began sampling a foretaste of the horrors to come. Unlike most of those close to them, these lucky ones survived, escaping into a life of exile which eventually brought them, ironically, to the halls and classrooms of American university German departments. Here they have sought to make sense of the Holocaust and to contribute to the intellectual life of both adopted and lost homelands. The essays of this volume chronicle, in classically undramatic scholarly prose, the often terrifying dramatic events of their half-century hegira.