In Her Father's Eyes: A Slovak Childhood in the Shadow of the Holocaust

"In Her Father's Eyes: A Slovak Childhood in the Shadow of the Holocaust" is a moving tale about Jewish life and a father's profound love for his only child. The exhibition is based on the diary of Béla Weicherz, in which he documents the life of his only daughter, Kitty, in prewar Czechoslovakia. Started as a baby book before her birth in 1929, the journal contains frequent entries about the ups and downs of Kitty's childhood, often written in vivid detail. Weicherz included photographs, developmental charts, and Kitty's own drawings to enhance the text, all featured in the exhibition. The journal entries stop in early spring 1942, just days before the family's deportation to a Nazi death camp. By bridging prewar and wartime periods, the diary also provides a rich context for understanding the history from which the Holocaust emerged. This gripping exhibition is brought to the University of Hartford through the generosity of Richard and Lea Rubenstein.

On September 14, 2009, the Maurice Greenberg Center for Judaic Studies hosted a lecture by the author and curator of the exhibition, Professor Daniel Magilow, a professor of German and Holocaust Studies at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Professor Magilow received a B.A. in Comparative Literature from Columbia University and his M.A. and Ph.D. in German from Princeton University. During the 2005-2006 academic year, he was the Pearl Resnick Postdoctoral Fellow at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. While serving as the Resnick Fellow, he discovered the diary of Bela Weichherz in the USHMM archives, translated it into English, and prepared the text for publication.

"In Her Father's Eyes" will be open in the Sherman Museum of Jewish Civilization from September 14-October 26, 2009. Please call or email Susan Gottlieb @ 860.768.4964 or mgcjs@hartford.edu for additional information on visiting hours.