Maxim D. ShrayerNov 19, 2023
I Saw It
Ilya Selvinsky and the Legacy of Bearing Witness to the Shoah
Academic Studies Press 2013
In I Saw It: Ilya Selvinsky and the Legacy of Bearing Witness to the Shoah (Academic Studies Press, 2013), based on archival and field research and previously unknown historical evidence, Maxim D. Shrayer introduces the work of Ilya Selvinsky, the first Jewish-Russian poet to depict the Holocaust (Shoah) in the occupied Soviet territories. In January 1942, while serving as a military journalist, Selvinsky witnessed the immediate aftermath of the massacre of thousands of Jews outside the Crimean city of Kerch, and thereafter composed and published poems about it.
Shrayer painstakingly reconstructs the details of the Nazi atrocities witnessed by Selvinsky, and shows that in 1943, as Stalin's regime increasingly refused to report the annihilation of Jews in the occupied territories, Selvinsky paid a high price for his writings and actions. This book features over 60 rare photographs and illustrations and includes translations of Selvinsky's principal Shoah poems.