No Snow in December

Maria Lewitt

About this book
Irena and Julek are a rare breed; Polish Jews who survived the WWII in Europe. In 1949 they arrive in Australia, half a world away from family, friends and the familiar patterns of the past. They find many problems: strange landscapes, job opportunities limited by suspicion of ‘reffos’, exploitative fellow Poles, language barriers, money, and real and imagined discrimination. Despite being haunted by the spectre of the war, Irena slowly becomes an Australian. Based on Maria Lewitt’s own experience, No Snow in December is a sensitive and humorous evocation of the migrant experience. Winner, NSW Premier’s Literary Award in 1986.
Product details
Category
The Holocaust
Publisher
Arrow (A Division of Random House Group)
Published
2019
ISBN
0434422304, 9780434422302
Country
Australia
Pages
283
Author
Maria Lewitt

Born Maria Markus in 1924 in Lodz to a middle-class Jewish family, Maria and her older sister, Eugenia, grew up in a cultured home with books, music, and governesses. Most of the pupils at the private high school they attended were Jewish. Maria married Julian Lewitt in 1944 and immigrated to Australia in 1949. In Australia, Maria worked on a poultry farm and as a seamstress and machinist. She also cofounded and operated several businesses including a bakery and milk bar. Maria started volunteering at the Melbourne Holocaust Museum in 1996.

Apart from the separation from her beloved family, the greatest grief Maria experienced in migrating was her exile from her native language and literature, which she could not share with her children.

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