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Book Launch: “But I Live: Three Stories of Child Survivors of the Holocaust”

But I Live

But I Live, © But I Live

29.08.2022 - Article

The book launch of “But I Live: Three stories of Child Survivors of the Holocaust” is featuring the book's editor Charlotte Schallié, artist Miriam Libicki and Holocaust survivor David Schaffer in conversation.

The event is moderated by Dr. Abby Wener Herlin, Program & Development Manager at the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre.

About the book:

An intimate co-creation of three graphic novelists and four Holocaust survivors, But I Live consists of three illustrated stories based on the experiences of each survivor during and after the Holocaust.

David Schaffer and his family survived in Romania due to their refusal to obey Nazi collaborators. In the Netherlands, brothers Nico and Rolf Kamp were separated from their parents and hidden by the Dutch resistance in thirteen different places. Through the story of Emmie Arbel, a child survivor of the Ravensbrück and Bergen-Belsen concentration camps, we see the lifelong trauma inflicted by the Holocaust.

To complement these hauntingly beautiful and unforgettable visual stories, But I Live includes historical essays, an illustrated postscript from the artists, and personal words from each of the survivors.

As we urgently approach the post-witness era without living survivors of the Holocaust, these illustrated stories act as a physical embodiment of memory and help to create a new archive for future readers. By turning these testimonies into graphic novels, But I Live aims to teach new generations about racism, antisemitism, human rights, and social justice.

“As the child protagonists take us by the hand to guide us through their memories, we ourselves turn into witnesses. Devastating, poetic, and beautiful.”
-- Nora Krug, illustrator and author of “Belonging”

About the Authors:


Charlotte Schallié is a professor and chair in the Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies at the University of Victoria.
Barbara Yelin studied illustration at the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences. In 2014, Yelin published the award-winning graphic novel Irmina.
Gilad Seliktar is an acclaimed graphic novelist and children’s book illustrator.
Miriam Libicki holds an MFA in Creative Writing and is an award-winning graphic novelist.

When: September 14, 2022 | 7:30 pm

Where: Sidney and Gertrude Zack Gallery
Jewish Community Centre of Greater Vancouver
950 West 41 Avenue

Audience Q&A and book signing to follow.

Presented by the Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre, UBC Public Humanities and the University of Victoria Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies and supported by funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

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