One Man’s Diary of Sur­vival in Nazi Con­cen­tra­tion Camps

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Odd Nansen, Van­der­bilt Univer­sity Press Hard­cover $39.95 (640pp) 978-0-8265-2100-2

Orig­i­nally pub­lished in English by Put­nam in 1949, here’s a WWII con­cen­tra­tion-camp diary, re­plete with atroc­i­ties and ter­ror, but writ­ten by non-jewish Nor­we­gian Odd Nansen. Ar­rested in 1942 for help­ing refugees flee the Nazis, Hansen’s easy, de­tailed writ­ing is en­gross­ing in its oc­ca­sional hu­mor­ous di­gres­sions, his out­spo­ken­ness with his Ger­man cap­tors, tales of the spe­cial de­prav­ity reserved for Jewish in­mates, and his dis­gust with the anti-semitism of other Nor­we­gians. With forty sketches of life in the camps by Nansen him­self, and a must-read in­tro­duc­tion, along with ex­ten­sive an­no­ta­tions by edi­tor Ti­mothy Boyce, From Day to Day is his­tory at its best.

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