When Light Pierced the Darkness

When Light Pierced the Darkness : Christian Rescue of Jews in Nazi-Occupied Poland

3.92 (38 ratings by Goodreads)
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Nechama Tec's incisive account of the rescue of Jews by Christians in Nazi-occupied Poland draws heavily on her own childhood experiences. Her in-depth study - the first of its kind - contrasts the attitudes and behaviour of altruistic helpers, and paid rescuers. She discovers a fascinating pattern, in which altruistic Christians applied their customary practise of helping the needy, without regard for their own safety, whereas paid rescuers acted with the motive of removing the Jews and the danger they represented to Poland. This is a deeply affecting book, which deals squarely with the ingrained anti-Semitism in Polish society, yet pays tribute to the extraordinary risks taken by Polish people on behalf of their Jewish compatriots.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 288 pages
  • 149.86 x 226.06 x 17.78mm | 430.91g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Revised ed.
  • 0195051947
  • 9780195051940
  • 1,092,419

Back cover copy

Hiding Jews from the Nazis carried the death penalty, and yet an unusual group of Christians willingly opened their doors to Jews. Who were these rescuers and what motivated them to risk their lives for persecuted Jews? Based on case histories and the author's own personal experiences, she vividly recreates the experiences of both the rescuers and the rescued.show more

About Nechama Tec

Nechama Tec is Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Connecticut at Stamford. Her other publications include the memoir Dry Tears: The Story of a Lost Childhood (OUP 1984).show more

Review quote

`A book that is a long overdue and valuable contribution to both Holocaust history and the study of human nature.' Jewish Reportershow more

Rating details

38 ratings
3.92 out of 5 stars
5 29% (11)
4 34% (13)
3 37% (14)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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