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Golden Harvest: Events at the Periphery of the Holocaust and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
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Golden Harvest Hardcover – Mar 27 2012

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (March 27 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199731675
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199731671
  • Product Dimensions: 21.1 x 2 x 14.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 318 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #22,610 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


"lucid and chilling book" --The New Yorker

"extraordinarily powerful account" --Neal Gendler, The American Jewish World

"[Golden Harvest] is a remarkable, stunning work." --Gila Wertheimer, Chicago Jewish Star

"Starting from a disturbed posed photograph of paesant gleaners in search of "post-Jewish" gold in the soil of Treblinka death camp, Jan Tomasz Gross and Irena Grudzinska Gross have created in this profoundly moving volume a chilling, sometimes shocking, passionate, and yet always balanced examination of the extent to which plunder of Jewish possesion was often a communal enterprise in wartime and post-war Poland." --Madeline G. Levine, Kenan Professor of Slavic Literatures Emerita, University of North Carolina

"Jan and Irena Gross guide us expertly through the "Heart of Darkness" that was wartime Poland. Using a single, deeply disturbing photograph, this book captures brilliantly the whole terrifying rapaciousness of Polish -- and European -- society as the Jews face the specter of elimination." --Norman M. Naimark, Robert and Florence McDonnell Professor of East European Studies, Stanford University

About the Author

Jan Gross is Professor of Politics and European Studies at New York University. He is the author of Neighbors: The Destruction of the Jewish Community in Jedwabne, Poland, a National Book Award finalist. Irena Grudzinska Gross is Associate Research Scholar in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, at Princeton University.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Marv Givertz on July 24 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is of the quality that one expects from Jan Gross.It is "bone and muscle" fat; nothing extraneous; unvarnished .Despite having read earlier works of this nature,I was devastated by motives and methods described by the authors
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 19 reviews
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Must read March 20 2013
By Kindle Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a book everyone should be required to read. It illustrates the effects on the human spirit of war, hatred, greed and cruelty. I think that is a lesson that is very apt for the times we are living in now, with it's glorification of greed and selfishness. This story is not about the Poles or the Ukrainians, or even about the Nazis. It is about people. It is about the depths to which we all can sink given the right circumstances.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Atrocities Suffered by Polish Jews during World War II May 31 2015
By Dr. Jerrold Katz - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was an excellent description of the behavior of many Polish people towards the Polish Jewish population during World War II. The book is well written and provides a thorough description of the atrocities suffered by the Jewish population in Poland during World War II. It provides descriptions of individual incidents rather than a broad brush description.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
An amazing and at the same time grizzly story told about ... Aug. 21 2014
By William H. - Published on
Format: Hardcover
An amazing and at the same time grizzly story told about one single picture taken after the fact. The research is well done and the narrative is striking. Most of the research is done from Polish sources, but they are put in footnotes in both English and Polish where a researcher could follow up for themselves. Waivered just a bit from the original premise in certain sections, but right on point all of the time.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Peripheral but no less shocking than actions at the core of the Holocaust Nov. 22 2014
By marcia pinskier - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Triggered by a visual cue, this work outlines both the common post-war rape of the dignity of the Jewish murdered as well as the communal undertakings and attitudes to 'transition of Jewish property' during the war.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Lingering Scorn Nov. 24 2015
By Eric Maroney - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Golden Harvest: Events at the Periphery of the Holocaust by Jan Tomasz Gross and Contributions by Irena Grudzinska Gross explores the photograph on the cover, widely believed to be taken at the Treblinka death camp shortly after the war. Here, peasants are digging up the remains of Jews killed at the camp in search for valuables (mostly gold and silver). They stop for a semi-causal snapshot before human remains, arranged for the camera.

As the subtitle suggests, the book investigates how the outrages of the Holocaust continued well after the war was over. This true not only of the dead, but of the living. In many instances Jews were killed in Poland and elsewhere following as they tried to settle in their former towns or retain lost property. This books shows that not even the dead were safe. Their graves were desecrated with casual disregard and/or outright scorn.

People who study the Holocaust know this well; this book will not come as a surprise. Most of the Operation Rheinhard camps in Poland continued to be desecrated until present times (all but Sobibor are museums and protected now, but in the past access to the sites were unrestricted). This photo, although shocking and savage, is only a small slice of the lingering, shameful events of the post-Holocaust era.