March 17, 1942-Etty Hillesum

80 years ago today.

“We are not allowed to walk the Promenade any longer & every miserable little clump of two or three trees has been pronounced a wood with a board nailed up: No admittance of Jews. More and more of these boards are appearing all over the place. Nevertheless there is still enough room for one to move and live and be happy and play music and love each other.”

Etty Hillesum, March 17, 1942 – A Life Interrupted

How does one keep such a positive attitude in the face of adversity? Etty did not focus on the growing list of places banned from Jews; but rather on the things she could still control: The choice to be happy, to live, to play music, and to love others. For her, these were the things that brought meaning and beauty to life.

These restrictions were the Nuremberg Laws, enacted in 1935, and eventually became law in the Netherlands. Among other regulations, these laws prevented Jews from parks and gardens to protect the health and enjoyment of Aryans.

Men walking a street in Amsterdam 1930's-1950's.

Photo Nationaal Archief

Get the full version of A Life Interrupted and Letters from Westerbork. (Affiliate link)


Thank you for visiting The Jar. If you have found value from this post please like, share, comment, subscribe. Thank you for your support! ❤️ 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: