chapter  2
Re-imagining the unimaginable: theater, memory, and rehabilitation in the Displaced Persons camps
ByMargarete Myers Feinstein
Pages 16

Regardless of the sensibilities of Anglo-American social workers who objected to what they considered to be a morbid obsession with the past, child and adult survivors in the Displaced Persons (DP) camps dramatized their wartime experiences. DP plays valorized partisans and resistance fighters, allowing non-combatant survivors to imagine that they had participated in the fight against the Nazis and providing role models for the struggle against the British mandate in Palestine. Creating a narrative of their past, present, and future, the DPs connected their experiences to the need for a Jewish state in the Land of Israel. Far from remaining silent about their experiences, survivors reenacted their most traumatic memories. These performances reveal the need of survivors to understand their past and to shape their own future.