Reviewer June Maffin:Living on an island in British Columbia, Canada, Dr. Maffin is a neophyte organic gardener, eclectic reader, ordained minister (Anglican/Episcopal priest) and creative spirituality writer/photographer with a deep zest for life. Previously, she has been grief counselor, broadcaster, teacher, journalist, television host, chaplain and spiritual director with an earned doctorate in Pastoral Care (medical ethics i.e. euthanasia focus). Presently an educator, freelance editor, blogger, and published author of three books, her most recent (Soulistry-Artistry of the Soul: Creative Ways to Nurture your Spirituality) has been published in e-book as well as paperback format and a preview can be viewed on YouTube videos. Founder of Soulistry™ she continues to lead a variety of workshops and retreats connecting spirituality with creativity and delights in a spirituality of play. You can find out more about June by clicking on her Web Site.
Author: Goran Rosenberg
Translated from the Swedish by Sarah Death
Publisher: Other Press
Uniquely conceived, Brief Stop: On the Road from Auschwitz, captivates the reader by the author’s fascinating and unusual recounting of his Holocaust-survivor father, David Rosenberg’s journey from Auschwitz, Poland to Sweden.
The horrors David
experienced during WW11 either became repressed memories or were such
that he chose not to remember or talk about it. To better
understand the journey from the Polish Lodz ghetto to concentration
camps and and survival, the author carefully researched David’s
story and raised important ethical issues for consideration for later
David was just one of many in the Lodz ghetto in Poland when Jewish administrator and Nazi collaborator, Chaim Rumkowski, made the decision to sacrifice the elderly, sick and all children under the age of ten so that the remaining people of the Lodz ghetto could avoid extermination. As a result, the Lodz ghetto was not fully liquidated and David’s life was spared prompting the “does the end justify the means?” question.
Ultimately moved from the Lodz ghetto, to concentration camps in Auschwitz and then various other locations, David experienced what millions of people snared in the Nazi web of cruelty, endured. But he survived.
And, when he finds himself in the small town of Sodertalje, Sweden, he struggles in his Holocaust-survival to be understood. But, David is a man with a background, a different language and customs, and remains an outcast. The author uses this part of his father’s journey to highlight the unspoken tragedy of survivor-recovery, raising the question of how society can best respond to all survivors of war, abuse, terrorism who must begin anew physically, emotionally, intellectually, spiritually. Focusing attention on his father’s survival, the author raises the question of justice for all survivors of terrorism ('then' and 'now') in his reminder that after WW11, those charged with war crimes were often found innocent because reconstruction of the economy was deemed to be more important than restoration of justice and the question which emerges: which is more moral: justice or economics?
Brilliantly and flawlessly translated from the original Swedish by Sarah Death, A Brief Stop is a riveting, hauntingly emotive tribute to all who not only suffered, endured and survived Nazi concentration camps, but who tried to put their lives back together after their liberation from those camps in the face of menacing shadows that were always present - reminding, interfering, depressing, haunting, never releasing them.
This is a book that touches the mind and soul in its beautiful blend as poetic memoir, historical narrative, and gripping journalistic biography of David Rosenberg. Its importance cannot be underestimated.