Each Woman Dies Her Death a Thousand Times: Voice of Female Experience in the Holocaust

TitleEach Woman Dies Her Death a Thousand Times: Voice of Female Experience in the Holocaust
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsJohnston, Michelle
CityWaterloo, Ontario, Canada
Abstract

The nuances of female-centric elements of Holocaust experiences have been under-represented in WWII historiography until relatively recently. While there is no single, “typical” female experience in the Holocaust, a woman's path, as well as elements of her suffering, were significantly shaped by her gender in unique ways. Utilizing female authored memoirs, this thesis examines experience and memory to illuminate unique elements of how the Holocaust was experienced by female victims. The ways in which gender influenced Holocaust experiences in the pre-WWII era, the era of deportations, and in camp confinement are explored, along with unique and significant examples of female-centric means of resistance. Issues such as menstruation, lesbianism, sexuality, hair loss, beauty standards, childbirth, fetishization of the female body and grief are explored in order to contribute to a more inclusive and nuanced understanding of how women experienced the Holocaust.

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