Talk, reading and book signing with Lisa Gruenberg, author of a second-generation Holocaust Memoir, My City of Dreams.
Dr Lisa Gruenberg is a physician, medical educator and writer based in Boston. Her essays have been published in Ploughshares and Michigan Quarterly Review. Her short story set in South Africa won the Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship in 2012.
Gruenberg began writing in 2004, when her father, a Viennese Holocaust survivor, began having nightmares and flashbacks about his past. Suffering from insomnia and depression, she was woken in the middle of the night by the voice of his sister, Mia, who disappeared into Germany in 1941 when she was just fifteen years old. She was compelled to write down her words. After her father’s death in 2005, she traveled to Vienna, Germany and Israel to explore this lost landscape, and to trace the fates of Mia, their extended family, friends and neighbors. She wove these stories together, linking them with primary source materials: photographs, archival documents, family letters, diaries, her father’s writing, his genealogy research, and the joyful tales he told her long ago. My City of Dreams is a Holocaust tale, but it is also very much the modern-day story of the relationship between one daughter and her father, about how trauma travels down through the generations, and about how we find meaning in our lives.
Sponsor: Williams Bookstore