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Elli: Coming of Age in the Holocaust

The book Elli: Coming of Age in the Holocaust provides much information on what happened during this time. It is a biography by Livia E. Bitton Jackson. Livia Jackson was thirteen when she was taken to Auschwitz. After liberation, she completed high school in displaced person camps in Germany. In 1951, she traveled to the U.S. on a refugee ship and completed her higher education, later receiving a Ph.D. from N.Y.U. Since, she has taught at several colleges and became Professor of Judaic Studies at Herbert H. Lehman College of The City University of New York. She later married, and made her home in Israel, where she currently teaches at Tel Aviv University. This is her first book. Livia E. Bitton Jackson came from a Jewish family. She loved her school, her family, the Danube countryside, the season, life itself. Elli lived in Somorja, a small sunny town, at the foot of the Carpathian Mountains when the Holocaust started. The slow drag of the war, food shortages, getting worse as the days went on, and lack of news of the soldiers on the fronts thickened the winter fog. Daily, broadcasts from Hitler were made. One of his broadcasts became a catch phrase with the Hungarian Nazis: “We will play football with the heads of the Jews.” Elli’s father used to tell her not to believe in this, that they were just trying to scare the Jews. As the winter wore on, however, her father seemed to become more and more distant. With the winter over, Elli’s birthday comes. She was now thirteen. Many wonderful things were happening. Jancsi Novack, her crush, said hello to her, she passed examinations, and she wrote for application forms to the Jewish Gymnasium in Budapest. Later that night, the Nazis returned to Elli’s house. They raided the whole entire house, tearing it to pieces. They took whatever they would like from the store, plus the family’s most precious belongings. A couple of nights later, Elli heard voices in the...
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