June 22, 2014

"I Remember Them Now" by Laurence Salzmann

Blue Flower Press: In the late 1930's, there were eight thousand Jews in Rădăuți, a small town in the Bukovina region of Romania. During 1974-76, when the photographer/filmmaker Laurence Salzmann went to Rădăuți on a Fulbright Fellowship, there were only two hundred and forty Jews among the entire population of twenty-two thousand.

"I Remember them Now" is a short film made from newly rediscovered, kodachromes and audio from the Salzmanns' original time in Rădăuți.

April 13, 2014

Nie wieder! - Die schlimmsten Reisen der Welt

Meine Wertung
Nein, Freude kommt nicht auf...

...beim Lesen dieser recht lieblos von Hans Magnus Enzensberger zusammengestellten Anthologie; keine Schadenfreude, keine Lesefreude, nicht einmal Solidarität mit den stark gestressten Weltenbummlern, denn dazu sind die gewählten Textausschnitte zu kurz. Ging es also darum, möglichst viele namhafte Autoren zu versammeln, um der Auswahl Gewicht zu verleihen? Der Verdacht liegt nahe, dass es sich hier um eine Art Zweitverwertung von Texten aus dem Portfolio des Eichborn Verlages handelt, angereichert um zahlreiche Stories aus der literarischen Vorlage für dieses Buch: "Worst Journeys", herausgegeben von Keath Fraser 1991 in New York.

Herausgeber und Verlag werden dem kritischen Leser unisono vorhalten, dass "Die schlimmsten Reisen der Welt" ja auf kein Vergnügen hindeuten. Der Leser jedoch hätte sich von den Reiseberichten mehr Humor und den Reisenden eine Prise Selbstironie gewünscht, dann hätten alle die Reiseabenteuer unbeschadet überstanden, so aber...?! Ausnahme: "Die Reise nach Petuschki" von Venedikt Jerofejev - eine Entdeckung, die den dritten Stern in der Buchbewertung bringt!

March 28, 2014

Czernowitz - Jewish City of German Language


Click on the front cover for a – free – copy of Friedrich J. Ortwein's book!

Friedrich J. Ortwein: "Up until now, I was profoundly convinced, that the love and the devotion of the citizens of Cologne to their home town, the antique CCAA (Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium), one of the Daughters of Rome and free imperial city, cannot be exceeded by anybody in the world. But during the travel preparations for our journey to Galicia and Bukovina, when I came across the website of the Jews expelled from CZERNOWITZ, I had to reverse: The children and grandchildren of Czernowitzers, together with a few Holocaust survivors, have created a website containing a huge data volume and so they emphasize in an unique and inimitable way their love for the home country of their ancestors.

Forum members from all over the world, from the Americas, from Australia and South Africa, from Israel and Europe analyze, comment and swap ideas on events, research their genealogical roots, discuss and value rediscovered archival materials, enjoy old and new photos, exchange holiday and birthday wishes and all this happens in English with embedded German, Yiddish and Hebrew particles."

March 2, 2014

Hitler's Forgotten Ally - Ion Antonescu and His Regime, Romania 1940-1944

Personal Rating
"For most Western scholars, the Marshal is a war criminal, held responsible for the deaths of between 250,000 and 290,000 Jews and between 10,000 and 20,000 Romas. [...] For many Romanians, Antonescu is a national hero, a brave patriot who preserved Romania as a sovereign state during the war." Dennis Deletant doesn't resolve the ambiguity of "Hitler's Forgotten Ally", but his book is an excellent contribution to track the development of Antisemitism in Romania, to comprehend Ion Antonescu's rise and fall and to learn on the tragic fate of the Jews during the Romanian Holocaust. Even the Royal Family and several Romanian politicians - not too many - were horrified by the brutality of the Romanian anti-Jewish measures:

"Through these methods, unfamiliar in civilized countries, and totally alien to the spiritual structure of the Romanian people in this province, which has been brought up over the last 150 years to respect the law and in the most profound public morality [...] the Romanians have been condemned to witness how hundreds and thousands of Jews, most of them personal acquaintances alongside whom they had lived their whole lives, were led through the streets of Cernauti on Sunday mornings, while the church bells were ringing the summons to the holy mass, in convoys flanked by armed police and soldiers, carrying on their backs their entire fortune, calling out and shouting in their pitiful desperation [...]"

This quotation (see p. 161-165) comes from a memorandum dated July 14, 1942, addressed to the Romanian government erroneously attributed by Dennis Deletant to Traian Popovici. As a matter of fact, this enlightening memorandum is an act of resistance, drafted by Dori Popovici, Traian Popovici's uncle. Despite small inaccurancies, Dennis Deletant's book is a most worthwhile reading.

February 6, 2014

The Ethical Seminar in Czernowitz

Leo Baeck Institute: Constantin Brunner (actually named Leo Wertheimer) was born in Altona, Germany on August 27, 1862, the grandson of Rabbi Akiba Wertheimer. [...] Brunner lived since 1895 as an independent academic with his family in Berlin; 1913-30 in Potsdam and after l933 in exile in The Hague, where he died on August 27, 1937. With his Magnum Opus "Die Lehre von den Geistigen und vom Volk" he conceptualized a philosophical system connected to Spinoza and against Kant, Nietzsche and academic philosophy. [...] Since the publication of his main work in 1908, but especially due to his personality, Brunner attracted the spiritually young, as well as intellectuals, politicians and artists, thus creating the "Brunner-Circle". [...]

Constantin Brunner and Frederick Kettner, Misdroy/Poland, August 1912

Apart from Berlin, where a Constantin Brunner Society was formed in 1925, the main center was in Czernowitz, the "Ethical Seminar" founded by Frederick Kettner [actually named Friedrich Katz] in 1919.

The Ethical Seminar Czernowitz, 1921
The Ethical Seminar Czernowitz, 1922
Since 1933 his followers dispersed all over the world. In 1947 they founded the "International Constantin Brunner Institute" in The Hague to publish Brunner’s work once again and to advocate his memory.

Eduard Rudnicki / Eli Rottner, 1925

Leo Baeck Institute: Eduard Rudnicki, better known as Eli Rottner, was born on March 8, 1898 in Stryj, East Galicia. [...] His friend Schlomo Ball introduced Rudnicki to the Jewish Zionist youth organization Haschomer being a member himself. In the spring of 1919, however, they formed their own youth group working on a farm in Slobodka-Lesna in order to enlarge their agricultural abilities aiming to immigrate to Palestine in the near future. In June 1919, a pogrom in this town, in which several were killed and others badly injured, forced Rudnicki and Ball to leave Slobodka-Lesna. They illegally fled to Czernowitz, which was Rumanian territory since 1918. In Czernowitz, Rudnicki got to know Friedrich Katz. Friedrich Katz (1886-1957) was a teacher, philosophical author and poet, who called himself Frederick Kettner after his immigration to the U.S.A. [...] Katz played an important role in the reception of the philosophy of Constantin Brunner, being the founder of the so-called 'Ethical Seminar' in Czernowitz, which Eduard Rudnicki joined. [...] In 1957, he immigrated to Israel after having lived in Poland until then. Because of bad health, Rudnicki returned to Germany to his daughter in 1966, divorced his wife and died in 1979. Eduard Rudnicki/Eli Rottner is the author of [...] "Das Ethische Seminar in Czernowitz - Die Wiege des internationalen Constantin-Brunner-Kreises".
First Name and Surname
Original Profession
Residence (1965)
Photographs 1866-1994
Series VI
Subseries / Box / Folder
Ignaz / Irving Ausländer
New York

Rose Ausländer née Scherzer
New York

7 / 1 / 1
Bella Ball née Rosenkranz

Perished in the Holocaust
6 / 1 / 1; 7 / 1 / 2
Schlomo Ball

Perished in the Holocaust
6 / 1 / 1; 7 / 1 / 2

January 28, 2014

Iuliu Barasch's Travel Report on Jewish Life in the Kraków Area, Galicia, Bukovina, Moldavia and Walachia

...from Kraków via Lemberg, Brody, Tarnopol, Czernowitz, Jassy and Galați to Bucharest. Dr. Iuliu Barasch (June 1815 - 30.04.1863), physician, philosopher and writer published for the Allgemeine Zeitung des Judenthums in 1843-1845 a series of articles on Jewish life in Kraków, Galicia, Bukovina, Moldavia, and Walachia.

Source: http://www.compactmemory.de/
Click here for a PDF compilation of these 35 articles and/or download transcriptions of particular articles by clicking on the respective dates!

28.01.184304.02.184311.02.184318.02.184325.02.184311.03.184308.04.184315.04.1843 • 30.10.1843 • 06.11.1843 • 13.11.1843 • 20.11.1843 • 27.11.1843 • 18.12.1843 • 25.12.1843 • 05.02.1844 • 06.05.1844 • 13.05.1844 • 20.05.1844 • 27.05.1844 • 15.07.1844 • 29.07.1844 • 05.08.1844 • 19.08.1844 • 02.09.1844 • 09.09.1844 • 28.10.1844 • 04.11.1844 • 11.11.1844 • 16.12.1844 • 10.02.1845 • 17.02.1845 • 17.03.1845 • 14.07.1845 • 28.07.1845 •

Wikipedia: Iuliu Barasch or Baraş (1815—1863) was a Galician-born Jewish physician and writer who made his career in Romania. Born in Brody into a Hasidic family as Yehuda ben Mordehai Barasch. He studied Philosophy at the University of Leipzig and took his doctorate at the University of Berlin. Barasch tried to settle in Moldavia, but the authorities refused to give him the right to practice medicine and as such he settled in Wallachia, being firstly, in 1842, a physician in Călăraşi, then in 1845, in Craiova and finally settling in Bucharest, starting teaching natural sciences at the Saint Sava Academy in 1852 and then a professor at Bucharest's School of Medicine and Pharmacy. Beside working as a doctor, became a radical and ardent Romanian patriot. A friend of C.A. Rosetti and Ion Heliade Rădulescu. He was a popularizer of medical science and of natural science in general, and the first Jewish Romanian journalist. In 1856-1859 he edited a journal Isis sau Natura (Isis or Nature), the first popular science magazine in Romania. The magazine published studies of astronomy, hypothetical articles about the plurality of worlds or about the most popular inventions of the time, such as aerostat and "submarine ships". In 1857, he started work editing Israelitul Român, a magazine that was to remain in print for almost 100 years. Barasch was also the founder of the first children's hospital in Bucharest. He is memorialized in Bucharest's historically Jewish Văcăreşti neighborhood: the Baraşeum Theater, now home to the State Jewish Theater; the adjoining Baraşeum clinic; and the street that runs in front of the theater, formerly Ionescu de la Brad, now str. Dr. Iuliu Barasch.

Letter from Iuliu Barasch to his brother Eisig, 1839

January 22, 2014

Jews Deported as Aliens or Stateless Persons from Bukovina to Transnistria in 1942

Click on the pictures to enlarge or click here in order to download the PDF version of the listing! These data are brought to you by courtesy of Dragoș Olaru, Czernowitz Regional Archives.