Terezin: Voices from the Holocaust

by Ruth Thomson

An account of the concentration camp Terezín (known as Theresienstadt under... read more

An account of the concentration camp Terezín (known as Theresienstadt under the Nazis) provides a look at life at the camp chronologically during the war years, drawing heavily on primary source material. Many artists were held in Terezín. Small text vignettes describe various aspects of camp history and camp life, while ample captioned photographs of people and artwork created in the camp deepen readers’ understanding. The “official” drawings and paintings the artists were forced to do for the Nazis showed an ideal camp environment. But many of the artists secretly drew and painted scenes that told the real story. The contrast between these is profound, not only in terms of content, but often in terms of a single artist’s stylistic approach. Abundant quotes are part of this visually inviting presentation that also takes a close look at how the Nazis duped the Danish Red Cross into thinking Terezín was a labor camp where prisoners were well cared for. Details about how the Nazis literally staged the Red Cross tour, constructing model housing and parks and feeding selected prisoners in advance so that they could pose along streets designated for the tour, were also the subjects of the artists, who mocked the false reality in revealing works. Ruth Thomson’s compelling history concludes with a timeline, glossary, and sources.

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2012

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