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Scrolls of Testimony
Scrolls of Testimony
 
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Abba Kovner

Publisher: JPS

Scrolls of Testimony is a profoundly moving chronicle of the Holocaust. The author, award-winning Israeli writer Abba Kovner, intended this book as an almost liturgical account of the greatest tragedy to befall the Jewish people, and he wrote it in the Jewish tradition of megillot, or scrolls. Taken together, the pages are reminiscent of the Talmud, with the central text surrounded by notes and excerpts of poetry and prose.

Scrolls of Testimony reads like a suspense novel—powerful, dramatic and compelling—but it is more than that. It is the testimony of the author woven with others’ eyewitness accounts, diary entries, poems, and even last wills and testaments. Many of these were carefully recorded and hidden during the war at great personal risk to the writers, who desperately wanted to record the unfathomable events unfolding around them.

Regarded by many as one of the great masterpieces of Holocaust literature, Scrolls of Testimony took over ten years to research and write. It is indeed a modern Jewish classic. Kovner worked on the book until his death and it remains his final tribute to the courage and dignity of the victims and a fulfillment of his promise to bring their testimony to future generations.

The effort involved in creating the English edition of Megillot Ha-Edut (Scrolls of Testimony) was monumental. The fine translation was undertaken by Dr. Edward Levenston former professor of English linguistics at Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Rabbi Irving Greenberg, President of Jewish Life Network and Chairman of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council, has written the foreword; it is a superb introduction not only to the work, but also to Kovner himself. The haunting paintings of acclaimed artist Samuel Bak, who like Kovner is a son and survivor of the Vilna ghetto, enhance the book.

Available in hardcover

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