Jewish book: I was born in Bergen Belsen by Yvonne Salomon

75 years after the liberation of the German concentration camp of Bergen-Belsen, this book brings together two strong and inspiring testimonies. That of Hélène, a French resistance fighter who was arrested, tortured and then deported to the camp. And that of Yvonne, her daughter, born there.

Although Hélène died, she left intense and rare writings to Yvonne, now 75 years old. A powerful testimony to which she responds by questioning History, by probing her own identity, by probing her personality, by revealing incredible family secrets. From chapter to chapter, through time, pain, hope, fear, an intense dialogue between generations takes place.

This book, of course, evokes the horror of the Nazi concentration camp. But, above all, it surprises and inspires through the stories in the History it develops. By what miracle do some, in the inhuman living conditions of a camp, manage to show the greatest humanity?

What sense of values could have led a mother and her daughter interned in the same camp to offer their treasure – a piece of chocolate – to Hélène when she had no strength left but was about to give birth in secret? And why did Yvonne baby never cry during the six months she lived hidden in the camp’s barracks, not uttering her first cry until after its liberation? Does the survival instinct explain everything?
I was born in Bergen-Belsen reveals what is most terrible and contrasting in human beings: their barbarity as well as their humanity.

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