Holocaust Sub-Genre by Sarah Sullivan

Report
Sarah Sullivan---Libr. 264 Tween
Literature

Traditional
Children’s Literature


Wonder Woman takes on the
Nazis.
Traditional literature for
children/tweens features a
young protagonist who,
through her struggles,
emerges stronger, wiser, and
hopeful about the future.
Struggles must lead to
catharsis.
True of both biography and
fiction.
Survival
Statistics


(Pictured): 54 Children
found alive at the liberation
of Bergen-Belsen.
Overall Europe: Of 1.5
million Jewish children under
16 in 1939, 175,000 survived
the war.
Poland: Of 1 million Jewish
children under 14 in 1939,
5000 were alive in 1945.
Early Biographical Literature
Amusement and
Discovery
(Pictured): Millie Perkins as Anne
Frank in 1959 movie.

“…Anne Frank’s diary
simply bubbles with
amusement, love, and
discovery…it is a warm and
stirring confession to be read
over and over again.” --- New
York Times 1952 , Book
Review
Early versions of Anne Frank’s diary
deliberately removed overt references to
her Jewish identity.
Thanks To My Mother (2000)
Schoschana Rabinovici


Short, picture book.
Pencil drawings
combined with simple
narration.



Overly positive representations trivialize
horror.
Overly negative representations may not be
appropriate for children.
Necessary to find a balance
The Devil’s
Arithmetic (1990)



Uses elements of science
fiction to tell protagonist’s
story.
Teenage girl travels back in
time, finds herself
transformed into a Jewish girl
on her way to Auschwitz.
Able to combine hopeful
ending with more realistic
portrait of Holocaust.
Han Nolan (1994)



Comatose adolescent
neo-Nazi finds herself
trapped in Holocaust
survivor’s memory.
Darker than “Devil’s
Arithmetic.”
Subdued hope at end:
no longer neo-Nazi,
but still confused.

Jordan, S. D., (2004) Educating Without Overwhelming: Authorial
Strategies in Children's Holocaust Literature. Children's Literature in
Education, 35 (3), 199–218. Retrieved at:
http://web.ebscohost.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/ehost/detail?sid=665ac808-71ce-4aa9-bd6298e05d27f3bc%40sessionmgr10&vid=1&hid=24&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=aph&AN=14426263

Kertzer, A. (2000). Like a Fable, Not a Pretty Picture: Holocaust
Representation in Robert Benigni and Anita Lobel. Michigan Quarterly
Review, 39 (2). Retrieved From: http://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/textidx?cc=mqr;c=mqr;c=mqrarchive;idno=act2080.0039.213;rgn=main;view=text;xc=1;g=mqrg

Martin, M. J., (2004) Experience and Expectations: The Dialogic Narrative
of Adolescent Holocaust Literature, Children’s Literature Association
Quarterly, 29 (4). Retrieved at:
http://muse.jhu.edu.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/journals/childrens_literature_association_quarterly/v029/29.4.martin.html

Tal, E., (2004). How much Should We Tell the Children? Representing
Death and Suffering in Children’s Holocaust Literature. Retrieved at:
http://www1.yadvashem.org/yv/en/education/conference/2004/43.pdf





Frank, Anne. Anne Frank: The Diary of a
Young Girl. New York: Doubleday, 1952
Nolan, Han. If I Should Die Before I Wake.
New York: Harcourt, 1994.
Rabinovici, Schoschana. Thanks To My Mother.
New York: Dial Books, 1998.
Vander Zee, Ruth. Erika’s Story. South Bend:
Creative Edition, 2003.
Yolen, Jane. The Devil’s Arithmetic. 1988. New
York: Puffin, 1990.

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