The book of zookeepers wife by diane ackerman
Led by the criminal zoologist Lutz Heck, they carted off the best animals for their own collections.
The zookeepers wife book club questions
They were all the same emotionally for her; she felt empathy, compassion, love for all of them. The Polish Army rose up in rebellion as the Russian Army, fox-like, waited for the Germans and the Poles to fight to the death. She realized that she could trust animals in a way that maybe she couldn't be quite so certain about with humans. So Jan and his staff had reason to enter the ghetto to pick up unused scraps to feed the animals. And not all of the chapters are all that informative. A few years ago, 'nature' writers were asking themselves, How can a book be at the same time a work of art, an act of conscientious objection to the destruction of the world, and an affirmation of hope and human decency? In the movies, heroism often means people killing other people. This powerful thriller would be a great novel — except that it is true. What is amazing here is how, in such a dark time, there can also have been so many experiences of joy, however fleeting. When I read it, I began to see the extraordinary sensibility Antonina had about animals, and how many she had adopted. And the story in the book reminds us of what can happen. They brought in tref — nonkosher food — and smuggled out people. The complexity of the operation was significant. She was not, as her husband once called her, "a housewife," but the alpha female in a unique menagerie. Many of the animals were taken by a Nazi officer who happened to be in charge of a zoo in Germany.
But it was to help people survive, and not just bodily. Antonina and Jan were not in this alone.
And the story in the book reminds us of what can happen. Worth checking out. So Jan and his staff had reason to enter the ghetto to pick up unused scraps to feed the animals.
The book of zookeepers wife by diane ackerman
The rest stayed. They brought in tref — nonkosher food — and smuggled out people. And some men went to the extreme length of having a medical procedure to reverse their circumcisions. The Zabinskis hid Jews in sheds, enclosures and even the lion house. A few years ago, 'nature' writers were asking themselves, How can a book be at the same time a work of art, an act of conscientious objection to the destruction of the world, and an affirmation of hope and human decency? He smuggled Jews out of the Warsaw Ghetto to the zoo. And she was able to look after all of the animals that she was also raising in her house at the same time. The zoo reopened in — with some of its old animals but without its old vigor, and with Stalinism casting a new pall over the grounds. Jessica Chastain plays Antonina in the film - from moviefactsinc.
He loved animals and shared that with Antonina and with Jan and lots of other people and wrote books about it and yet he was fully able to go out and shoot perfect beautiful specimens of animals and bring in the Nazis on New Year's Eve to murder the animals in their pens at the zoo.
The effort to save those targeted by the Nazis involved far more than a few heroic individuals.
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They had this lunacy about wanting to breed a pure ancient form of animal and of human. She snuck them into the house, they had dinner together, there were piano concerts. The cruelties of the past remain with us in diverse forms. It's all nature, it's all part of the whole and my great challenge is to try to find a way to leave a sense of what it was like to once be alive on the planet. The inspiration is unmistakable. And if we want to protect this planet, that includes other animals as well. I learned that there were unusual species of small horses living in a forest in Poland and I wanted to write about them. This was so that those operating the zoo could speak of them without giving away what was going on. And I keep wondering, under those conditions, would I have been that brave? For me, the more interesting story is Antonina's. She was not, as her husband once called her, "a housewife," but the alpha female in a unique menagerie. Many of the people who sheltered there hid out in the now empty animal enclosures. I keep wondering, under those conditions, would I have been that brave? It reminded me of the White Helmets in Syria. Soon the Nazis destroyed the zoo with bombs and guns.
So often we equate heroism with violence, usually with males — with martyrdom and cruelty. And she developed such a bond with them and with Mother Nature itself. I think she applied that to the animals also because from very early days on she was regarded as an animal whisperer.
The complexity of the operation was significant. It reminded me of the White Helmets in Syria.
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