Not detailed in Weissmann Klein’s memoir were the earliest implementation of the Nazi laws and regulations, which eventually led to the development of the Holocaust and her experiences up until the effects had been felt by her family. In 1933, A series of laws that began to be implemented after a two-day boycott of Jewish business in Germany, excluded anyone of non-Aryan descent “from the legal profession, civil service, judgeships, the medical profession, teaching positions, cultural and entertainment enterprises and the press” (Spielvogel, 832). After the death of Hindenburg in 1934, the situati...
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...ly in her experiences she was advised by her father to wear her skiing shoes to which she says “Those shoes played a vital part in saving my life. They were study and strong, and when three years later they were taken off my frozen feet they were good still….” (Weissmann Klein 86).
Many of Gerda Weissmann Klein’s experiences during the Holocaust were common for Jewish families; yet, her survival was not, as most perished, unable to survive the torments of Nazi policy and Jewish extermination. Many contributing factors, including prior German laws regarding Jewish communities, prominent racism and discrimination, segregation experienced in many forms, as well a small amount of preparation, shaped her arduous journey over many years. With regards to her survival Weissmann Klein remarks that it is“…both an exalted privilege and a painful burden” (Weissmann Klein, 247).
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