“Krug slashes through a fog of shame, determined oblivion and misdirection to unearth her family’s role in the Holocaust as well as the stubborn silences in German life.”
Featured in New York Times Critics’ Top Books of 2018.
“Nora Krug, who was born more than three decades after WWII ended, doggedly investigates conflicted feelings about her German homeland and her family’s role in the Holocaust in this riveting, multilayered graphic memoir.”
Featured in NPR’s Best Books of 2018.
Nora Krug was born several years after the fall of the Nazi rule. But unfortunately, the Second World War emanated a long scar throughout her childhood and the teenage period in the city of Karlsruhe, Germany. For Nora, even the simplest fact of her German citizenship circumscribed her to the Nazi Holocaust and its inenarrable grisliness and left her without a sense of cultural belonging. Still, Nora had a little information about her own family’s involvement in the war.
In the very beginning of “Belonging: A German Reckons With History And Home”, Nora devotes a whole page towards providing unaccustomed readers with a dictionary definition of the term. She avouches that the purpose of her narrative is to unhide the truth of her uncle, father and her grandfather’s potential involvement with the Nazi party. Her subsequent investigation resembles the suspenseful helical of a neo-noir detective narration as she interviews various historians and relatives, crosses the Atlantic, and dredges archives for the truth of her ancestor’s participation in Nazism. Parallel to this, her actual aim is Heimat, which can be described as a sense of home and identity. Despite Belonging’s meaningful subtitle, Nora doesn’t reckon with home and history to the extent as one would expect her to do. Instead, she is in a quest for home through familial history.
Overall, Belonging wrestles with the idea of Heimat, with a completely original record of a German woman’s struggle with the weight of cataclysmic history.