The Holocaust after 70 years: Holocaust survivors in the United States

Abstract

Over 70 years, there have been different narratives of the Holocaust survivors coming to the United States. Survivors’ stories begin with an event of major historical significance. Difficulties in conceptualizing historical trauma, along with common distortions and myths about Holocaust survivors and their children are examined. This article proposes that it is impossible to discuss the consequences of extreme suffering without consideration of historical meaning and social context with which they are entwined. The evolution of the social representation of the Holocaust and the contradictions in clinical attributions to survivors and their children with consideration of the future is described. Attributions to survivors and their children with consideration of the future is described.

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Correspondence to Robert M Prince.

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A version of this article was originally presented at the Conference: Scenic Remembrance of the Shoah: Saved, But Not Free? May 8 and 9, 2015, at the Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences, Frankfurt, Germany. Organized by Drs. Kurt Grünberg and Friedrich Markert.

Robert Prince, Ph.D., ABPP is Clinical Associate Professor, New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy & Psychoanalysis where he is past co-chair of the Interpersonal Track. He is also Past-President of Psychologist-Psychoanalyst Clinicians, Section V of the Division of Psychoanalysis of the American Psychological Association and an Associate Editor of The American Journal of Psychoanalysis.

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Prince, R. The Holocaust after 70 years: Holocaust survivors in the United States. Am J Psychoanal 75, 267–286 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1057/ajp.2015.29

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Keywords

  • historical trauma
  • Holocaust
  • survivors in the US
  • generational transmission
  • myths