Resilience and Courage Women, Men, and the Holocaust Nechama Tec

Publication date:
11 Aug 2004
Yale University Press
448 pages: 229 x 152mm

Nechama Tec’s groundbreaking insights into the different experiences of Jewish women and men during the Holocaust

In this, Nechama Tec’s fifth book on the Holocaust, vivid individual stories blend effortlessly with detailed comparisons of wartime experiences of women and men. The result is a captivating account of how the coping strategies and the ultimate fate of each sex differed. Tec, as always, listens to the voices of the oppressed, voices that originated in wartime diaries, postwar memoirs, archival materials, and her own interviews with survivors and rescuers. Concentrating on life under extreme conditions, Tec’s research uncovers the previously overlooked significance of mutual cooperation and compassion that operated across gender lines.

Nechama Tec, professor of sociology at the University of Connecticut, Stamford, was recently appointed to the President’s Council for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. One of her books, In the Lion’s Den: The Life of Oswald Rufeisen, received the 1991 Christopher Award and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

In this riveting and poignant book Nechama Tec offers groundbreaking insights into the differences between the experiences of Jewish women and men during the Holocaust. Drawing on the personal stories of numerous survivors and rescuers, Tec reveals how the coping strategies and ultimate fate of men and women differed and how mutual cooperation and compassion operated across gender lines.

“Nechama Tec’s Resilience and Courage is a remarkable achievement, based on a deep knowledge of the subject, profound sociological analysis, and convincing narrative style. Tec concentrates on the oppressed rather that the oppressors, and has shown that the gender division among them was primarily a result of the policy of the perpetrators and not the manifestation of conflicts within the society of the victims.”—Israel Gutman, Professor Emeritus of the Hebrew University, Jerusalem