Monday, June 18, 2012 – 7:30PM

Valley Beth Shalom Synagogue
15739 Ventura Blvd.
Encino, CA 91436

jgsla_meeting_we-are-here-book-228x350Ellen Cassedy set off into the Jewish heartland of Lithuania to study Yiddish and connect with her Jewish forebears. But once there, old certainties began to dissolve, and what had begun as a personal journey of return soon expanded into a larger quest. The result was her new book, “We Are Here: Memories of the Lithuanian Holocaust” (University of Nebraska Press).

Ellen not only immersed herself in the nearly vanished culture of the “Jerusalem of the North,” but also conducted groundbreaking research, speaking with a brave cadre of Jews and non-Jews who were exhuming the complex truths of the mid-20th Century, reaching out across age-old barriers, and attempting to build a more tolerant future. Ellen’s journey changed her outlook on bystanders, victims, collaborators, rescuers – and herself.

Probing the terrain of memory, massacre, and moral dilemmas, Cassedy asks: Can we honor our heritage without perpetuating the fears and hatreds of the past? Her rich and deeply-felt account offers important insights – and hope.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE BOOK, GO TO http://www.ellencassedy.com/


Ellen Cassedy

Ellen Cassedy is the author of We Are Here: Memories of the Lithuanian Holocaust, a new book published by the University of Nebraska Press. The book begins with a Jewish roots journey, then expands to explore how Lithuania today is engaging with its Holocaust past, shining a spotlight on fragile efforts toward tolerance. Ellen has explored the world of the Lithuanian Holocaust in the land of her Jewish forebears for ten years. Her work has been published in Hadassah, The Forward, Lilith, and other publications. She is a former columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News. She lives near Washington, D.C. Michael Steinlauf, author of Bondage to the Dead: Poland and the Memory of the Holocaust, says of the book: “Pioneering…will reach out to all those who care about not replaying in this new century the disasters of the century that has just ended.”

A book signing will follow the presentation — please bring cash or checks. Books are $20 each.

JGSLA members are free. Guests $5.00. Traveling library available at 7:00PM. Refreshments will be served.