UK academics to study poetry of Shoah

By Jennifer Lipman, March 15, 2013

Poetry written in response to the Holocaust is to be translated and studied for the first time as part of a £93,000 British research project.

Professor Jean Boase-Beier, an academic at the University of East Anglia, is to lead the study, which will cover poetry written in Yiddish, German, Lithuanian, Italian and Greek.

The ultimate aim is to bring together the translations in one anthology, uniting for the first time the voices of many who lost family or friends during the Nazi era, or who themselves survived the camps and other atrocities.

The study, which is being funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, will cover the work of well-known literary figures who wrote during or after the Holocaust, including Romanian-born Paul Celan and Nelly Sachs, who escaped Nazi Germany on the last flight to Sweden.

Professor Boase-Beier is also hoping to shine light on the work of unknown figures, from children who wrote verses in Theresienstadt, to poems smuggled out of the Polish ghettos.

Last updated: 1:45pm, March 15 2013