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Hybrid Lunchtime Exhibition Talk: A Letter from Danzig: Understanding Jewish Family Correspondence from the First World War, Dr Joe Cronin

April 24, 2023 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Image courtesy of George Fogelson

This event is organised as part of the Holocaust Letters exhibition events series.

Letters provide insight into their writers, but how much can we learn about them from one letter?

This talk examines a Jewish nurse’s letter to her brother from the opening months of the First World War. The letter is replete with allusions to the unfolding military situation on the Eastern Front, but it also offers a glimpse into her own journey of self-discovery – a newly trained nurse, a woman who has realised that she ‘likes working’.

The talk will also focus on the challenges of reading correspondence written in archaic German in a near-indecipherable script. How much meaning can we truly recover from textual artefacts that were intended for somebody who knew their author far better than we do?


Joseph Cronin is Lecturer in Modern German History at Queen Mary University of London. He specialises in modern German, Jewish and East European history and is currently writing a book about Jews in the Free City of Danzig (1920–39).

Event guidelines for those joining online:

  1. The Library will send you a Zoom link and joining instructions via email prior to the event. Please check your junk email folders.
  2. Please try and join 5 minutes before the event start time and we will let you into the room (do try and bear with us if this takes a few minutes).
  3. If you would like to ask a question during the event, please type your question into the chat function, and we will endeavour to answer as many questions as possible during the Q&A. Your webcam will not be seen during this event.
  4. The event will be recorded for the Library’s YouTube channel and will be shared at a later date.

This event is free, although registration via the link below is required. Please note that our free events are run by staff volunteers. Thank you for your patience should we have any technical or audio difficulties. We will do our best to correct them but this is not always possible.

Book now


April 24, 2023
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Event Categories:


The Wiener Holocaust Library
View Organiser Website

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