Poetry in Hell

15 07 2010

I’ve just finished helping my Mom (Dr Sarah Traister Moskovitz) publish a web site containing what might be considered to be her Magnum Opus.

Poetry In Hell is the culmination of ten years of research into the poets of the Warsaw Ghetto, and their poetry rescued in buried milk cans from the Ringelblum Archives.  My dad spent years restoring and cleaning up hundreds of microfiche images of the original Yiddish poetry, which my Mom translated into English.  A Professor Emeritus in Educational Psychology, she received assistance for the project from the The California State University at Northridge Emeritus and Retired Faculty Association, The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and The Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw.

I built the framework for the web site, and it’s hosted on the same WordPress engine as this site.

Poetry in Hell is an amazing project that provides insight into the daily lives of people living in the ghetto.  The Internet is the perfect medium for this kind of archive project; it would be a real shame if it were restricted to books on shelves in niche libraries that were accessible only to researchers.

To the people with family who died in the Ghetto; to people who can’t imagine how humanity can express itself under such conditions; to people craving a window into the final days of Yiddish culture as it existed in its heyday; to historians, and especially to the holocaust deniers – Poetry In Hell is an ongoing testament to the depth of artistic expression, the complexity of human interaction, and the intricate perception of Yiddish culture that Hitler could not extinguish.

Do have a look at it, and if you like it, let your friends know about Poetry in Hell.







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