Of the 400,000 German-speaking Jews that escaped the Third Reich as refugees, approximately 16,000 ended up in Shanghai, China, as part of one of the more remote enclaves within the Jewish diaspora. The stories of the Shanghai Jews contain extremes of the suffering and endurance that defined the refugee experience. Nobody wanted to go to China, and because Shanghai was the last choice of refugees, those who went there had nowhere else left to go. They had endured every stage of escalating Nazi persecution, including the mass arrests during Kristallnacht, the real beginning of the Holocaust. This groundbreaking oral history volume is based on 20 years of interviews with over 100 former Shanghai refugees. It offers a moving and at times astonishing collective portrait of courage, culture shock, persistence, and enduring hope in the face of unimaginable hardships.
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