Trauma and Resilience in Holocaust Memoir: Strategies of Self-Preservation and Inter-Generational Encounter with Narrative (Rowman & Littlefield, 2020) is a new book by a BPSI Academic Partner, Shira Birnbaum, PhD.
Through narrative analysis of the memoirs of six holocaust survivors from a single extended family, Trauma and Resilience in Holocaust Memoir: Strategies of Self-Preservation and Inter-Generational Encounter with Narrative examines strategies of self-preservation of young people exposed to violence and persecution at different ages and life stages. Through the lens of studying resilience in child development, this book describes the striking diversity of holocaust-era experiences and traces the arc of a remarkable global diaspora. Birnbaum argues that stories from the past can enhance understanding of the internal lives of today’s young refugees and survivors of violent conflict. Exploring the socio-politics of narrative and memory, this book considers the ways that children of holocaust survivors may honor the past while also allowing a new generation to engage family history in a conversation with contemporary concerns.
This is a remarkable book, very well researched and captivating with its emotional details. The book stands out among the many Holocaust narratives. In addition to the extraordinary manner in which the six members of this family has survived, the book is rich in theoretical explanations of how the author had arrived at her conclusions.
~ Anna Ornstein, MD, Supervising Analyst at BPSI
About the Author: Shira Birnbaum is a science and medical writer at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and a BPSI Academic Partner. She is a guest lecturer in the Department of Family and Community Health at The University of Pennsylvania and the author of two other books: Therapeutic Communication in Mental Health Nursing: Aesthetic and Metaphoric Processes in the Engagement with Challenging Patients (Routledge, 2017), nominated Book of the Year in psychiatric nursing in 2017 and Law and Order and School (Temple University Press, 2001), an ethnography about an educational program for justice-involved adolescents.