JCCV hosts Nina Bassat Book Launch

September 1, 2021 by Features Desk
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A moving and personal account of child survival has been captured in Nina Bassat’s memoir, “Take the Child and Disappear”.

Nina Bassat

At the online Book Launch last week, over 300 participants were mesmerised by her story of survival, triumph, communal involvement and loving dedication to her mother, family and community.

The JCCV and ECAJ co-hosted the launch of their past president with pride. Daniel Aghion, JCCV President noted in his introduction, that Nina’s memoir is a journey of discovery. “Nina describes herself as ‘this polite little woman from Brighton’. That modest phrase – though accurate – conceals a remarkable life and history.” The book spans her survival as a child in the Lwow ghetto and the Shoah, the journey leading to emigration to Australia in 1949, opportunities to nurture her family, legal and communal roles, with an enduring commitment to Diaspora Jewry.

Nina stated, “she was very grateful to Daniel Aghion and Bram Presser, the JCCV and ECAJ for the warm and insightful way in which the launch was conducted. I was overwhelmed by the large number of participants who proved me correct when I say that we have an absolutely outstanding community.”

In conversation with Bram Presser, themes of identity, memories of loss and indiscriminate acts of kindness, placed in historical perspective were discussed in an engaging and deeply moving manner. The weaving of Nina’s personal experiences and honest responses to participant’s questions was inspiring.

Bram said, “It was my great privilege and pleasure to launch Nina’s remarkable book. Even sitting at home in front of a computer screen, one could feel the enormous love and respect for Nina, which will only be enhanced by anyone who reads the book. I was especially thrilled with our conversation, full of Nina’s wonderful stories, unparalleled insight, wisdom and humour.”

“To have an event that connected us globally was very exciting – family and friends from Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, USA and Switzerland and from interstate were able to join us which made the online event so personal,” said Nina.

The respect and admiration people have for Nina was conveyed in the chat messages shared online during the presentation. Nina’s extraordinary impact on the Jewish community locally and internationally, and her communal involvement and love of life are positive messages of hope and strength for younger generations.

The online welcome of Nina’s children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren in Australia and Israel at the conclusion of the book launch was a source of great pride to all who attended.

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