The Self of the Historian
Book presentation with Bernard Wasserstein
22-9-2023, 2:00-4:30 p.m. Jewish Museum
On the occasion of the exhibition ‘Me, Jewish?!’ about Dutch-Jewish “ego documents” such as diaries, memoirs, and letters, David Wertheim talks with Bernard Wasserstein about the challenges of writing his newest book A Small Town In Ukraine, that uses “ego documents”, but in a sense is also one.
A small town in Ukraine, is about the hidden history of the town of Krakowiec, now in Ukraine, where Wasserstein’s family comes from. The book is the product of an underlying ”obsession”, as he describes it himself, to know everything about the history of this small place and its inhabitants, Jews, Poles, and Ukrainians. Over the centuries Krakowiec was a plaything of great powers and endured civil strife, bloodshed, and warfare up to the present day. It is not only a book about the impact of historical events on ordinary people, but also a personal document about the writer himself.