Holocaust Reading List - Background Reading for Wagner at Pacific Opera Victoria

Pacific Opera Victoria will present Richard Wagnerâ??s five-hour epic opera Die Walküre in October 2023. Although the music transcends, approaching Wagner in 2023 means reckoning with Wagner's influentially anti-Semetic views and the legacy that they have had.

This list offers some context for Wagner's views alongside the history of the real life impact those views have had.

Updated September 27, 2023
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Alias Anna : Zhanna Arshanskaya: a biography in verse : a true story of outwitting the Nazis
Hood, Susan
A Sydney Taylor Book Award 2023 Middle Grade Notable! A Jewish Book Council Award Middle Grade Finalist! The moving true story of how young Ukrainian Jewish piano prodigies Zhanna (alias "Anna") and her sister Frina outplayed their pursuers while hiding in plain sight...
I am here an unwavering spirit
Sank, Jordy
By chance alone : a remarkable true story of courage and survival at Auschwitz
Eisen, Max
An award-winning, internationally bestselling Holocaust memoir in the tradition of Elie Wiesel's Night and Primo Levi's Survival in Auschwitz In the spring of 1944, gendarmes forcibly removed Tibor "Max" Eisen and his family from their home, brought them to a brickyard and eventually...
Chance : escape from the Holocaust
Shulevitz, Uri
Winner of the SCBWI Golden Kite Award for Illustrated Books for Older Readers A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2020 A New York Times Best Children's Book of 2020 Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2020 Booklist Best...
Come to this court & cry : how the Holocaust ends
Kinstler, Linda
In 1965, five years after the capture of Adolf Eichmann in Buenos Aires, one of his Mossad abductors was sent back to South America to kill another fugitive Nazi, the so-called "butcher of Riga," Latvian Herberts Cukurs. Cukurs was shot. On his corpse, the assassins left pages from the closing...
The happiest man on Earth : the beautiful life of an Auschwitz survivor
Jaku, Eddie
A New York Times Bestseller In this uplifting memoir in the vein of The Last Lecture and Man's Search for Meaning, a Holocaust survivor pays tribute to those who were lost by telling his story, sharing his wisdom, and living his best possible life. Born in Leipzig, Germany, into a...
House of Glass : the story and secrets of a twentieth-century Jewish family
Freeman, Hadley
A writer investigates her family's secret history, uncovering a story that spans a century, two World Wars, and three generations. Hadley Freeman knew her grandmother Sara lived in France just as Hitler started to gain power, but rarely did anyone in her family talk about it....
In the garden of the righteous : the heroes who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust
Hurowitz, Richard
"In the Garden of the Righteous brilliantly describes how in the midst of the brutality of the Holocaust and the collaboration, acquiescence and passivity of millions, there were people who risked their lives to save others out of a sense of shared humanity. This book is more timely...
Just a girl : a true story of World War II
Levi, Lia
WINNER OF THE MILDRED L. BATCHELDER AWARD! In this award-winning memoir translated from Italian to English, a Jewish girl grows up during a difficult time of racial discrimination and war, and discovers light in unexpected places. This classic, powerful story from Lia Levi is...
No place on Earth
Marmor, Rafael
One hundred Saturdays : Stella Levi and the search for a lost world
Frank, Michael
One of Wall Street Journal's Ten Best Books of the Year * Winner of the National Jewish Book Awards for Holocaust Memoir and Sephardic Culture * Recipient of the Jewish Book Council's Natan Notable Book Award * Winner of the Sophie Brody...
Plunder : a memoir of family property and Nazi treasure
Kaiser, Menachem
A New York Times Critics' Best Nonfiction Book of 2021 Canadian Jewish Literary Award for Biography From a gifted young writer, the story of his quest to reclaim his family's apartment building in Poland--and of the astonishing entanglement with Nazi treasure...
I want you to know we're still here : a post-Holocaust memoir
Foer, Esther Safran
NATIONAL JEWISH BOOK AWARDS FINALIST * "Part personal quest, part testament, and all thoughtfully, compassionately written."--The Washington Post   "Esther Safran Foer is a force of nature: a leader of the Jewish people, the matriarch of America's leading literary...
When time stopped : a memoir of my father's war and what remains
Neumann, Ariana
In this remarkably moving memoir Ariana Neumann dives into the secrets of her father's past: years spent hiding in plain sight in war-torn Berlin, the annihilation of dozens of family members in the Holocaust, and the courageous choice to build anew. In 1941, the first...

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