I Shall Bear Witness: I Shall Bear Witness, 1933-41 v.1: The Diaries of Victor Klemperer 1933-41

I Shall Bear Witness: I Shall Bear Witness, 1933-41 v.1: The Diaries of Victor Klemperer 1933-41


By (author) Victor Klemperer, Translated by Martin Chalmers

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  • Publisher: Phoenix (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
  • Format: Paperback | 672 pages
  • Dimensions: 130mm x 194mm x 34mm | 420g
  • Publication date: 20 August 2009
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0753806843
  • ISBN 13: 9780753806845
  • Illustrations note: maps, port.
  • Sales rank: 226,050

Product description

A publishing sensation in German, the publication of Victor Klemperer's diaries brings to light one of the most extraordinary documents of the Nazi period. The son of a rabbi, Klemperer was by 1933 a professor of languages at Dresden. Over the next decade he, like other German Jews, lost his job, his house and many of his friends. Throughout, he remained loyal to his country, determined not to emigrate, and convinced that each successive Nazi act against the Jews must be the last. Saved for much of the war from the Holocaust by his marriage to a gentile, he was able to escape in the aftermath of the Allied bombing of Dresden and survived the remaining months of the war in hiding. Throughout, Klemperer kept a diary. Shocking and moving by turns, it is a remarkable and important document.

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Author information

Born in 1881, Victor Klemperer studied in Munich, Geneva and Paris. He was a journalist in Berlin, taught at the University of Naples and received a DSM during WWI as a volunteer in the German army. He was subsequently a professor of romance languages at the Dresden Technical College until he was dismissed as a consequence of Nazi laws in 1935. He survived the Holocaust and the war and taught again as an academic until his death in 1960.

Editorial reviews

A harrowing and vivid diary. Klemperer, cousin of the composer (who hardly appears), was a patriotic German Jew, born in 1881, who had fought in the Great War and was professor of Romance languages at Dresden University when Hitle r came to power. Here he recounts how he was driven out of teaching and had his car, house, library, furniture, telephone and typewriter confiscated; spent a week in prison for a single blackout offence, and was cooped up in a pair of rooms in a tenement house he was hardly allowed to leave. In the chaos that followed the great raid on Dresden early in 1945, he ran away to hide in a country cottage and saw the war out. Here is life under tyranny seen from below. (Kirkus UK)