‘When five words uttered by a German soldier determine whether you live or die, you spend your life trying to unravel all the what-ifs. What if I had not been born in Poland in 1939? What if those five words had not been said? What if I had grown up in a safe, happy environment, surrounded by a large family?’
Take the Child and Disappear examines the Shoah (Holocaust) from multiple perspectives – before, during and after. As the author recounts her experiences and those of her family members, she contemplates the many ways being a child survivor has shaped her life, both consciously and unconsciously. ‘I have lived a happy and fulfilling life, surrounded by a large, loving family and enriched by years of community involvement. Yet despite this, there has always been a sense of dislocation and some unresolved questions, most troubling of which were – who am I and where do I belong? I thought a visit to Poland might answer them. It did not.’ The book is also about Hadassa, Nina’s courageous and wise mother.
About the author: Nina Bassat was born in Lwów, Poland in 1939. The time and place has influenced much of her life and provides the background to her book. Her life has been divided between her profession as a lawyer, her leadership positions in the Jewish community at the state, federal and international levels and her family, which has been her centre of gravity. From childhood, books have been both a joy and escape and words have been her professional tools.
Take the Child and Disappear has been waiting seventy-five years to be written.