Religious Studies and Theology, Vol 40, No 2 (2021)

From Budapest to Montreal: Intergenerational Interlacing in Kalman-Naves’ Shoshanna’s Story

Simone Grossman
Issued Date: 3 Dec 2021


In Shoshanna’s Story. A Mother, a Daughter and the Shadows of History, autobiographical story, Elaine Kalman Naves tells, from her point of view as a child, the story of her mother Shoshanna, survivor of the camps, her own childhood in Budapest in the aftermath, war and the arrival of the family in Montreal in 1959. The intergenerational link is ensured by the reflections between cities, eras and languages, the narrative strata interweaving past and present, Europe and the New World, and the dead and the living. The birth of the girl born after the war arouses joy mixed with sadness. The baby is dressed in the clothes that belonged to the murdered children. Like the layers of strudel dough made by Shoshanna and the swaddles enveloping the little girl’s buttocks, the generations overlap, dynamically metaphorizing the temporal and spatial layers and restoring their reality to the victims of History.

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DOI: 10.1558/rst.21475


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