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Potomac Books


Holocaust Girls, Holocaust Girls, 0803248016, 0-8032-4801-6, 978-0-8032-4801-4, 9780803248014, S.L. Wisenberg, , Holocaust Girls, 0803298668, 0-8032-9866-8, 978-0-8032-9866-8, 9780803298668, S.L. Wisenberg, , Holocaust Girls, 0803206658, 0-8032-0665-8, 978-0-8032-0665-6, 9780803206656, S.L. Wisenberg

Holocaust Girls
History, Memory, and Other Obsessions
S.L. Wisenberg

2002. 148 pp.
$15.95 t
Out of Stock
2006. 142 pp.
$15.95 t

This bracing and vivid collection of essays gives voice to what some American Jews feel but don't express about their uneasy state of mind. These essays creatively and sometimes audaciously address the question of what it means to be an American Jew trying to negotiate overlapping identities—woman, writer, and urban intellectual in search of a moral way. S.L. Wisenberg’s deeply ambivalent connection with the Holocaust reappears throughout these essays as she struggles to find a way to live with history without being swallowed by it.

S.L. Wisenberg is the author of The Sweetheart Is In, a collection of short stories that was named a book of the year by the Chicago Tribune. She is co-director of the Masters in Creative Writing program at Northwestern University and also teaches at the University of Chicago Graham School of General Studies. She is the creative nonfiction editor of Another Chicago Magazine.

“Writing to be savored, to reread, to read aloud to someone else. . . . These are wonderful writings from a prolific local author whose talents deserve a large audience."—Chicago Tribune

“Anyone who gets meditative around the High Holy Days, wondering exactly what it means to be a contemporary American and a Jew, will find a caring companion in Chicago-based journalist S.L. Wisenberg. . . .The strength of this collection is not so much in the answers Wisenberg provides, but in the questions she raises.”—Forward

“One of the more provocative collections of writing I have encountered in some time, and I remain in admiration of Wisenberg for her curiosity, her use of imagination, and her eloquence. . . . In this collection, we know we are in the hands of a poet, someone who has a gift for gorgeous turns of phrase that are both economical and freighted with meaning. Wisenberg is an original voice, a writer who takes risks.”—Fourth Genre

"S.L. Wisenberg has found a way to approach, via imagination, informal scholarship, and a bold stylistic originality, the place of the Jew as stateless person in Europe, the American 'self' on shifting sands of comfort, security, and continuing uncertainty . . . , the search for meaningful traditions, and guilt about complicity with the status quo."—Rosellen Brown, author of Before and After and Half a Heart

"Marked as much by its inventive, even eccentric, prose style as it is by a strong moral and political conscience, Holocaust Girls has the kind of urgency and intimacy that marks the best creative nonfiction. Wisenberg explores her varied subjects with truly original insight that transcends her own identity without ever losing sight of it."—Robin Hemley, author of Nola: A Memoir of Faith, Art, and Madness

"The essays in Holocaust Girls run a generous gamut in terms of subject matter, yet they consistently offer a pitch perfect blend of candor, irreverence, and deep heart's feeling."—Madeleine Blais, author of Uphill Walkers: Memoir of a Family

“S.L. Wisenberg has perfected ‘the small personal voice’ that Doris Lessing advocated as the healing consolation we seek today in literature. Her lyrical essays are acutely honest, intelligent, sensitive, funny, touching, and magnificently rewarding.”—Phillip Lopate, author of Portrait of My Body and The Art of the Personal Essay

"Wisenberg has a good eye for offbeat detail. . . . She is an entertaining, self-aware narrator. A high point comes when Wisenberg considers the matter of Monica Lewinsky, reading whose biography, she writes, 'is like taking a five-hour call from your most annoying friend when you were fourteen years old, the one with constant boy problems.' . . .Equal parts Fran Lebowitz and Leon Wieseltier: smart and satisfying."—Kirkus Reviews

“A collection of essays about history’s forerunners, forgotten dissenters, and siblings of the famous.”—Jason Warshof, Heeb

“Wisenberg gives us history, personal history, biography, autobiography, a glimps of Grynszpan’s trial, and ultimately, focus: a vivid, clear way to look backward and inward. . . . I encourage, then, private individuals to read it. May everyone who does so advance the (so far) impossible project of understanding the unspeakable.”—Glenn Deutsch, Third Coast

"[Wisenberg's] essays are engaging because of their concerns and unpredictable turns. While commenting on common experiences and incidents of the day, her essays show the parallels and intersections of the lives of contemporary persons, especially Jews, with the lives of those caught in the threats and oppressions of Nazi Germany."—Small Press Book Review

"A poignant and urgent collection."—Rain Taxi Review of Books

"With her lucid style and power of observation, Wisenberg's insightful essays are gems not to be missed."—Booklist

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