Advanced Search

Learn About The Holocaust

Special Collections

My Saved Research

Login

Register

Help

Skip to main content

Pierre B. Holocaust testimony (HVT-951) interviewed by Phyllis O. Ziman Tobin and Anna Rosen

Oral History | Fortunoff Collection ID: HVT-951

Videotape testimony of Pierre B., who was born in Berlin, Germany in 1935 to a Jewish father and Christian mother. He recalls that his parents did not marry because of the political situation; his father's forced emigration, inability to adjust to life in Brazil, and return to Europe; and traveling with his mother to rejoin his father in Paris. He describes school; roaming the streets of Paris with his best friend Lucien, who died in Auschwitz and about whom he has written poetry; difficulties with other children who considered him German; his independence as a young child; his father's hospitalization, marking the last time Mr. B. cried until long after the war; and his father's arrest and deportation to Drancy. He relates a last visit with his father in Drancy before deportation to Auschwitz in July 1942; having to live with a family in St. Laurent-des-Eaux; staying alone with their two-year-old child; constant fear; one or two visits to his mother in Paris; liberation by the French underground; and reunion with his mother. He recounts his fierce desire to be French resulting in hatred of his mother because she was German; spending the next five years in a children's home run by Maurice de Rothschild; the trauma of attending summer camps in Germany; converting to Judaism at thirteen in order to have a Bar Mitzvah; and his education, career, and family. He ponders his ambivalent feelings toward his mother.

Author/Creator
B., Pierre, 1935-
Published
New York, N.Y. : Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, 1987
Interview Date
November 8, 1987.
Language
English
Copies
3 copies: 3/4 in. master; 3/4 in. dub; and 1/2 in. VHS with time coding.
Cite As
Pierre B. Holocaust Testimony (HVT-951). Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies, Yale University Library.