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Promotional Partner: Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum
A woman unearths family secrets and gives voice to things unspoken in this poignant memoir that traces her parents' escape from the Holocaust.
Esther Safran Foer grew up as the child of parents who were each the sole survivors of the Holocaust in their respective families. For Foer, that tragedy loomed in the backdrop of daily life, felt but never discussed. Even as she built a successful career, married, and raised three children, Foer always felt herself searching.
So when her mother casually mentions an astonishing revelation—that her father had a previous wife and daughter, both killed in the Holocaust—Foer resolves to find out who they were, and to learn how her father survived. Armed with only a black-and-white photo and hand-drawn map, she travels to Ukraine, determined to find the shtetl where her father hid during the war. What she finds not only reshapes her identity but also gives her the opportunity to properly mourn.
I Want You to Know We're Still Here is the riveting and deeply moving story not only of Foer's journey but of four generations living in the shadow of the Holocaust—survivors, storytellers, and memory keepers—determined not just to keep the past alive but also to imbue the present with more life. Esther Safran Foer is co-founder of Sixth & I, a center for arts, ideas, and religion. She lives in Washington, DC, with her husband, Bert; they are the parents of Franklin, Jonathan, and Joshua.