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White House in a Gray City: A Memoir of an Orphan Jewish Boy Who Survived The Holocaust (WW2 True Story)

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Itzchak Belfer: I have lived my entire life in his light! Through the intimate and authentic perspective of his student, we encounter Janusz Korczak, a pediatrician and adored teacher. In 1912, Korczak established a unique orphanage that is to this day a beacon for educators. There he gave children the freedom to develop and manage their talents. They learned about mutual Itzchak Belfer: I have lived my entire life in his light! Through the intimate and authentic perspective of his student, we encounter Janusz Korczak, a pediatrician and adored teacher. In 1912, Korczak established a unique orphanage that is to this day a beacon for educators. There he gave children the freedom to develop and manage their talents. They learned about mutual responsibility and caring and how to create a righteous human society. Korczak was murdered by the Nazis at the Treblinka Death Camp when he refused to abandon his children. I will never forget those times; this is a memorial volume The author, Itzchak Belfer, was raised and educated in Korczak's orphanage. We read of his flight from the Nazis through the Polish forests to Russia to become the only survivor in his large family and his attempt to immigrate to Israel, only to be waylaid in a Cypress deportation camp, where he studied art. Then of his renewed life in Israel, where his art commemorates Janusz Korczak, the Holocaust, and the family he lost. Scroll up now to get your copy of White House in a Gray City!


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Itzchak Belfer: I have lived my entire life in his light! Through the intimate and authentic perspective of his student, we encounter Janusz Korczak, a pediatrician and adored teacher. In 1912, Korczak established a unique orphanage that is to this day a beacon for educators. There he gave children the freedom to develop and manage their talents. They learned about mutual Itzchak Belfer: I have lived my entire life in his light! Through the intimate and authentic perspective of his student, we encounter Janusz Korczak, a pediatrician and adored teacher. In 1912, Korczak established a unique orphanage that is to this day a beacon for educators. There he gave children the freedom to develop and manage their talents. They learned about mutual responsibility and caring and how to create a righteous human society. Korczak was murdered by the Nazis at the Treblinka Death Camp when he refused to abandon his children. I will never forget those times; this is a memorial volume The author, Itzchak Belfer, was raised and educated in Korczak's orphanage. We read of his flight from the Nazis through the Polish forests to Russia to become the only survivor in his large family and his attempt to immigrate to Israel, only to be waylaid in a Cypress deportation camp, where he studied art. Then of his renewed life in Israel, where his art commemorates Janusz Korczak, the Holocaust, and the family he lost. Scroll up now to get your copy of White House in a Gray City!

30 review for White House in a Gray City: A Memoir of an Orphan Jewish Boy Who Survived The Holocaust (WW2 True Story)

  1. 5 out of 5

    Píaras Cíonnaoíth

    An extraordinary tribute for a remarkable man. Itzhak Belfer’s story of survival offers a fascinating all-encompassing human dramatization that stretches out from the dim days of the Second World War to the autonomous State of Israel. A holding and inspiringly idealistic account based on his own personal experiences, you’ll appreciate each page of this captivating journey of hope and inspiration. Raised and educated in an orphanage founded by pediatrician and teacher Janusz Korczak, author Itzcha An extraordinary tribute for a remarkable man. Itzhak Belfer’s story of survival offers a fascinating all-encompassing human dramatization that stretches out from the dim days of the Second World War to the autonomous State of Israel. A holding and inspiringly idealistic account based on his own personal experiences, you’ll appreciate each page of this captivating journey of hope and inspiration. Raised and educated in an orphanage founded by pediatrician and teacher Janusz Korczak, author Itzchak Belfer pays tribute to this remarkable man and the family he lost in this ‘memorial volume’. The art work in this book is outstanding and the story is extraordinary. A highly recommended read and five stars from me.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Judy McCarver

    Horrors of WWII Warsaw and the triumph of a survivor. This author escaped the Warsaw Ghetto to Russia and clawed his way thorough hard labor, abuse, antisemitism, in the years to follow. He returned to Warsaw following the war to find that literally his entire family, grandparents, parents; siblings and baby nieces along with his beloved orphanage director teacher/doctor Dr. Korczak, Ms Stefa and the children of the orphanage-all of them had been completely erased by the nazis. He then attempted Horrors of WWII Warsaw and the triumph of a survivor. This author escaped the Warsaw Ghetto to Russia and clawed his way thorough hard labor, abuse, antisemitism, in the years to follow. He returned to Warsaw following the war to find that literally his entire family, grandparents, parents; siblings and baby nieces along with his beloved orphanage director teacher/doctor Dr. Korczak, Ms Stefa and the children of the orphanage-all of them had been completely erased by the nazis. He then attempted to immigrate to Israel illegally but his ship was captured by the British who imprisoned the immigrants for several years before they finally made it to Israel. He is an artist, painting pictures and making sculptures of the holocaust and he devoted his life to sharing the stories of his family and his beloved Dr. Korczak. It is a very moving story and once again a poignant reminder of the tragic consequences of evil that flourished in WWII but also the perseverance and triumph of the survivors who later courageously told their stories and the stories of the ones they loved and lost.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jaideep Khanduja

    http://pebbleinthestillwaters.com/whi... White House in a Gray City by Itzhak Belfer: Memories Of Suffering and Fear White House in a Gray City by Itzhak Belfer is a recollection of suffering and fear of the past. It is also in remembrance of author's family members who are no longer with him. In fact, losing them in his childhood left him with no other option than living in an orphanage. In his dark journey of life, two persons were like a ray of light. These two persons were Janusz Korczak and S http://pebbleinthestillwaters.com/whi... White House in a Gray City by Itzhak Belfer: Memories Of Suffering and Fear White House in a Gray City by Itzhak Belfer is a recollection of suffering and fear of the past. It is also in remembrance of author's family members who are no longer with him. In fact, losing them in his childhood left him with no other option than living in an orphanage. In his dark journey of life, two persons were like a ray of light. These two persons were Janusz Korczak and Stefa Wilczynska. They were there to provide him proper direction. It is their direction because of which the author could understand and adopt the values of humanity, justice, honesty, and concern for others. Their teachings could help him to overcome all kind of hurdles in his life. Conditions at the time of author's birth were quite stormy and tragic. It was the period between the first and second world wars. His was an orthodox Jewish family living in hope and despair. Their home was in Warsaw during 1920s when he was living with his mother, father, and grandparents. Losing his father at a very young age forced him to shift to Dr. Korczak's home for orphans. Stefa Wilczynska was Dr. Korczak's associate at the orphanage. Nazi regimes defeating the free world during the second world war was not a good sign for humanity. Due to this, the author had a very bad impact on his mind, heart, soul, and spirit. Now, he is a sketch artist and sculptor. This profession helps him to express his pain, grief, and loss in a constructive manner. Having a deep concern for other's sufferings, the author has a firm belief that sanity will finally return to our lives. That makes the story of White House In A Gray City quite serious and impactful. Itzhak Belfer calls White House In A Gray City a memorial volume. The real name of Dr. Janusz Korczak is Dr. Henryk Goldschmidt. In fact, that was his pen name. He was a great author, educationist, and pediatrician. This book is a tribute to Dr. Korczak who was murdered by Nazis for refusing to abandon his children. The book is a must-read for people who wish to have some idea how a lone survivor in a large family struggles during his childhood and youth days. As a matter of fact, Itzhak's whole family was murdered during the war. Witnessing so many murders and losses in his life, he finally pays tribute to all of them through his work of art in Israel. Especially he is so grateful to Dr. Janusz for being the only light of hope in his life. You can call White House In A Gray City a memoir or autobiography.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Angie

    I had heard of Janus Korczak before reading this book, so it was really interesting to read about the experience of a boy who had been raised in his orphanage from the age of seven. The author, Mr. Belfer, had come of age to leave the orphanage by the time the orphanage had been moved to the ghetto, and later its occupants taken to death camps, so his story veers from theirs. However, the love, respect, and admiration he holds for Dr. Korczak is evident, and from his descriptions of the man and I had heard of Janus Korczak before reading this book, so it was really interesting to read about the experience of a boy who had been raised in his orphanage from the age of seven. The author, Mr. Belfer, had come of age to leave the orphanage by the time the orphanage had been moved to the ghetto, and later its occupants taken to death camps, so his story veers from theirs. However, the love, respect, and admiration he holds for Dr. Korczak is evident, and from his descriptions of the man and of the ideal life in the orphanage, that high esteem is well deserved. Belfer’s experience during the war is unusual. He was able to leave and find employment in Russia, then in Turkey. This doesn’t mean he was without hardship. Living conditions in these places still left him and various companions struggling for survival, whether because of extreme weather or lack of food. At the end of the war, Belfer returned to Poland only to find that no one he loved had survived, and he had to find his way in the world alone. Many memoirs of this time period end when the war ends, with only an afterword or author’s note to give information beyond that, but Belfer details making aliyah and his new life in Israel, his professional life and work as an artist, and his family. The book includes many examples of Belfer’s art.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Helga Cohen

    This was a very moving memoir about an orphan who was inspired by his adored teacher, mentor and pediatrician Janusz Korczak in a Polish orphanage during World War II. He describes his life in the orphanage, the teachings by Korczak who established it where they learned about mutual responsibility and caring and living and creating a righteous human society. Korczak was murdered by the Nazis in Treblinka when he refused to leave his children. Itzchak escapes from the Nazis, flees through the P This was a very moving memoir about an orphan who was inspired by his adored teacher, mentor and pediatrician Janusz Korczak in a Polish orphanage during World War II. He describes his life in the orphanage, the teachings by Korczak who established it where they learned about mutual responsibility and caring and living and creating a righteous human society. Korczak was murdered by the Nazis in Treblinka when he refused to leave his children. Itzchak escapes from the Nazis, flees through the Polish forests and ends up in Russia at a work camp and then escapes to immigrate to Israel. Before getting to Israel, he is first deported to a Cypress deportation camp and there he studies art. Once he makes it to Israel, his life is renewed and he gets married and has a son. He commemorates his former teacher, Janusz Korczak, the holocaust and his family. This is a wonderful retelling of his life and intertwined with quotes and his pictures. He left lasting legacies to his teacher and told a memorable story. This was a memorial to Korczak but also captured his own life filled with obstacles. An interesting read.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Sharon Maddix

    White aHouse in a Gray City I really enjoyed this book. It was sad but I liked his good attitude throughout the book. I liked that for all his hardship and struggles that he was able to appreciate the good things that happened. I also liked that he was able creat a happy life for himself through his art and family.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn Spurgeon

    Outstanding book This true story of a Jewish boy who lived through the holocaust times is heart breaking, especially the treatment received after the war. The drawings included are haunting.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn Hecht

    Kept me spellbound. Highly recommend. Written softly with a gentle voice. Evocative descriptions with sensitive narration. The author’s artworks are so very moving. All honor due him. Respect!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Csweeney

    Well paced, includes original,drawings I found the original drawing to be heartfelt and disturbing. The drawings bring to life the Holocaust through the eyes of the author. Although, he did not personally experience the ghettos and death camps, his impressions are accurate.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Charlene Medley

    Compelling It always amazes me to read stories of survival in the most horrid circumstances and yet for them to become productive citizens. I think this story lost much of its intensity when translated.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Patricia Moller

    An interesting perspective This was an interesting and unique perspective on the holocaust. His experiences before And after the war were an eye opener for me.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Alisa Yancey

    Very good- 1st hand account of growing up in an orphanage and what a positive impact the adults had on him.

  13. 5 out of 5

    sabrina briggs

    Good read Flowed well. Very interesting. Contained alot of personal information that made it an more intimate and stimulating adventure into a terrible part of history.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Gayle Tichauer

    A strange combination of dull but so intriguing unable to put it down.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mickenzie Jensen

    Overall, a good memoir of two great men I really enjoyed learning more about the doctor that have so much to the children in his care. His teachings and compassion are inspiring beyond words. I have always desired to know more about this man, and feel like I have learned a lot through this memoir. I also liked learning about the author and his survival and his life-long dedication to commemorating both the doctor and the holocaust. While much of his story often felt a bit jumbled and discombobulat Overall, a good memoir of two great men I really enjoyed learning more about the doctor that have so much to the children in his care. His teachings and compassion are inspiring beyond words. I have always desired to know more about this man, and feel like I have learned a lot through this memoir. I also liked learning about the author and his survival and his life-long dedication to commemorating both the doctor and the holocaust. While much of his story often felt a bit jumbled and discombobulated, overall, I found this to be a moving and informative memoir.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Christina Widmann

    A first-hand account of historical interest. That said, I had to force myself to read it. Belfer shows the trivial parts and brushes superficially over what could be interesting. He mentions Jewish customs without saying what they are. For a non-Jew this reads like a shopping list. Belfer fails to capture attention. Like his drawings (which are included as illustrations in the book), his prose is crude and graceless.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    I always appreciate a book that leaves me something to think about. The author’s life was filled with many insurmountable obstacles during his life in Germany during WWII and the holocaust. Without giving away the story, my favorites were the orphanage, the legacy of Janusz Korczak and the evolution of the author into the art world.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Anthony Ambruso

    What a wonderful book! It may seem to be an incongruous thing to say about such a horrible time full of suffering, but this story is ultimately about a life full of hope, a blessing to those children. I am amazed, and I feel that I have been improved just knowing about it. I learned a lot from this book

  19. 4 out of 5

    Laurie

    Very enjoyable read The subject of the Holocaust is a difficult one but must be discussed so that the crimes of the past are not forgotten. The accompanying artwork speaks as much as the words on the pages do.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Janet Cardillo

    Choppy but compelling I truly liked this story of the holocaust and its survivors. Allthough it read like arrr novel, I did find the skipping around a bit choppy. The writing and expressiion of feeling was very good.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Carol Mcguire

    Remembering the Unimaginable As time passes and the holocaust becomes a lost part of history, the memories of this talented author keeps the positive memory of generous people alive. We should never forget the horror brought on the world by the Nazis.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sheila Myers

    A powerful look at one of the most horrendous times in modern history. Itzhak Belfer did a wonderful job of describing what he lived through.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Maridel

    Memoir in Pictures A remembrance of the holocaust intwined with quotes and pictures, that is written with love and reverence. An easy but stimulating read.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Spicibear

    Thank you Great relating of a tragic time in the world. I appericate you taking the time and effort to bring your slice of memory forward for us to puruse.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Peggy Schmidt

    A must read for younger generations. This was a beautiful book about one of the darkest times in history. I hope everyone can experience this book.

  26. 4 out of 5

    mary thomson doig

  27. 5 out of 5

    Martha Miller

  28. 5 out of 5

    Nicole Murray

  29. 5 out of 5

    Pamela S Waddell

  30. 4 out of 5

    Karen Horn

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