Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Manya Auster Feldman - August 11, 1998

Talking About Experiences

Well, without having talked about the, the experience that you had...


As long as we're here, let's talk about this. Um, you said you urge survivors to talk.


And why do you think they should talk?

For the reasons that I said before, because there are, there are some people that are coming up that are saying that it's not true.

And do you think that if the, that if the Holocaust deniers listen to your tape, they're going to stop being Holocaust deniers?

I don't know. This is a good question. Maybe, maybe it will penetrate to somebody. But the, the question is, if they are looking at it, if they want to--to see it, that's the question. Chances are that they don't even want to see it, don't bother me with that.

So there must be other reasons to talk. And there will be other people who will see it.

Naturally. How about our, our children in schools, they, they are--you are already working on--you worked on curriculum for schools. This should be a subject for schools. The children should know. You know, I have a bunch of letters that I received from children that--that listen to my story that I went and you talked to. I mean, they were, they were amazed. I don't know to what extent and how much they will think about it--nevertheless, it's a thought. I mean, they saw a live person talking about this atrocity that happened during the W...World War II. Where they'll see uh, uh, uh, a movie made is one thing, it's based on something, but they see a live person talking. And, and, and uh, uh, uh, telling of his experiences, of, of even like I do, I'm expressing the feelings, I can't hold my, my crying back. I don't cry that often. But when, when, when I think about it, lately, in my, in my old age, I, I cannot fathom it. I really--I think, I cannot understand. How could something like this in, in, in, in a civilized world something like this could--how could it happen? Nobody has an answer. Do you know I, I some Orthodox have an...they say that there are times that God, that God turns away. I said, "So why does he turn away? If he omnipotent and if he is, he's, he's everything, he shouldn't turn away." They have an--I don't have that answer. I don't--I, I don't know. It's hard to believe.

But you're talking about it.

I talk about it.

Even though you think there's not enough--there's no words to say --


You're looking?

I am talking. I have friends that are not talking, that are complete muted. They can't even talk about it. I, I can talk about it. I, I, I have an awful lot of hurt inside of me and I have to transmit it, I have to talk about it.

And when you finish talking about it, if you know that um, you just scratched the surface, as you said...


...how do you feel at the end of it?

That I still have a lot to say, that I still have a lot to say. And I am still telling you that I am not even scratching the surface. In the, in the--it was 1942, we were put in the ghetto. It was in July, August. And then we were liberated in 1944. So it's, it's full two years, full two years that I lived outside without taking off my--my dress. No, it's more than two. It's '42...

Two years...

Yeah, two years.

You lived outside?

In the forest, as a partisan. That's another story.

That's another story.

That's another story, yeah.

All right. Why don't we get, why don't we get to that story.


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