DAUGHTER OF MY PEOPLE: Henrietta Szold and Hadassah by Hazel Krantz

DAUGHTER OF MY PEOPLE: Henrietta Szold and Hadassah

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An affectionate, admiring biography that notes Szold's great deeds--founding Hadassah's medical centers in Israel and setting up refugee camps for children fleeing the Holocaust--as well as her passion for botany and her off-key singing. When Szold's all-female N.Y.C. Zionist study group first considered sending a nurse to Palestine, it was ""terrifying. . . In 1912, women had very little power."" They couldn't vote; one member worried that men would laugh if the project failed. From this beginning, Hadassah, under Szold's leadership, brought medicine to Israel through two world wars, and now continues her efforts with two huge hospitals, medical, dental, nursing, and pharmacy schools, insisting that hospital services be available to both Arab and Jew. Szold's organization of the rescue of children from the Nazis--""children would have to be snatched to safety""--occurred when she was in her 60s and 70s. The book is most vivid when it quotes directly from Szold's letters, or portrays her in conversation with children. She missed America always (""Golden bantam corn and fish with flavor""), but gave her life to the catastrophes of history, cutting her skirts short towalk through the muddy fields of ragged, early settlements years before women were sanctioned to do so. Useful and inspiring, especially for those readers not yet clear about the difference a single life can make in a gigantic and troubled world.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1987
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: Lodestar/Dutton