Česká centra, Czech Centres

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Apr 12, 2005 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM

Helen Epstein: Where She Came From

Book Presentation: Reading & Discussion, 7 pm at the Czech Center.

WHERE SHE CAME FROM by Helen Epstein

When Helen Epstein published her book Children of the Holocaust  in 1979, it became a bestseller. It has remained in print for 26 years and has been translated into French, German, Italian, Czech, Swedish and Japanese. Her most recent book, Where She Came From: A Daughters Search for her Mothers History, is at once a family memoir and the social history of Central European women over the past two centuries, moving from the Czech-Moravian Highlands to Prague to New York. It has been translated into German, Japanese, Dutch, Czech and Hungarian.   

An award-winning author, Epstein uses decades of training as an investigative journalist to recreate the lives of her family, and a culture that was eradicated by the double devastations of Nazism and Communism.

Where She Came From is a book of women¹s history. "Helen Epsteins foremothers become our guides to the ways in which the past can be rescued by attention and empathy," wrote Gloria Steinem. " In Epsteins hands, truth becomes not only stranger than fiction but more magnetic."


Helen Epstein is the author of five books of literary non-fiction. Born in Prague in 1947, Epstein grew up in New York City and became a journalist during the Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. Her account of the invasion started her career as a journalist.

She began her teaching career at New York University  in 1974, and in 1981 became the first tenured woman professor in its journalism department. As a cultural journalist, she wrote in-depth profiles for the Sunday New York Times, Washington Post, and other national publications of icons such as art historian Meyer Schapiro; theater founders Joseph Papp and Tina Packer; and musicians Vladimir Horowitz and Leonard Bernstein -- each of whom she came to regard as a teacher. Her profiles of musicians were collected in the book Music Talks; the profile of Joseph Papp grew into the biography Joe Papp: An American Life. She continues to teach writing as a guest lecturer at MFA writing programs.

Ms. Epstein currently lives with her husband and two sons outside Boston. She is affiliated with Harvard University. She is at work on First Love and also is a frequent guest lecturer on memoir, trauma, and family history.


321 East 73rd Street
NY 10021 New York
United States


Apr 12, 2005 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM


Czech Center

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