Ms. Frances Lynch, Tanaiste Simon Coveney , Dr. Mary Honan, Prof., Dr. Michael Casey and H.E., Mr. Ze'ev Boker
As part of the British and Irish Trading Alliance's programme on Education, Research and Cultural Policy, the Israeli Embassy, Dublin, recently honoured both Dr. Mary Honan (Tipperary) and Prof. Dr. Michael Casey (Templemore) for their contributions in the promotion of Irish and international historical research.
The ambassadorial reception marked with great celebration the publication of Dr. Honan's book entitled: The Literary Representation of WWII Childhood: Interrogating the Concept of Hospitality, published by Cambridge Scholars Publishers, U.K.
Dr. Honan’s book focuses on ‘twenty one primary texts about childhood under Nazism, this book examines how childhood in literature has changed over the years, from the Romantic writers to child slave labour in the Victorian era, the child-soldier and the impact of deportation on both the child victim and their families post-wartime.
The genres covered … range from diaries, letters, comics, allegories, time-travel novels, fairy tales and novels and memoirs about Hitler youth.
Because of its broad focus, the work will be of interest to a diverse readership from survivors of World War II and their families to historians, teachers and librarians … including those in the Premier County of Tipperary … It will also benefit those practitioners working in the areas of deportation, trauma, child-soldering and human rights and tolerance studies’.
Prof. Dr Casey, who researched and wrote the forward, describes Dr. Honan as a very fine writer, and an equally wonderful artist, the portraits on the cover of the book all having been drawn by her based on fragments of photographs that survived the camps, even when, in most cases their child subjects had sadly perished.
Through her drawings, she exposes a little of the humanity of some of the children discussed in the book, each of the drawings an exposition of pain, suffering and loss that might otherwise have been concealed behind their smiles.
Dr Honan's book has been crafted with an obvious determination to imbue Nazism's young victims back to life.
Beyond that, her work is a gentle reminder to the world today about the dangers of anti-Semitism, of hatred, of bigotry towards all minority groups and the effects of such violence on the victims, the deportees, the injured, the dying, dead, and those left behind.
She has also crafted a work of empathetic beauty, and of hope, a glorious literary and artistic testimonial to the dead and those left to grieve’.
Ambassador Boker, Dr. Honan and Prof., Dr. Casey were delighted to receive guests as diverse as the Tanaiste Simon Coveney, Prof., Dr. Eoin O'Brien, Prof., Dr. Hilary Pyle, Frances Lynch, Superintendent Gerald Delmar and members of the International Diplomatic Corps: H.E., Deike Potzel (Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany), H.E., Marie-Claude Meylan (Ambassador of Switzerland), H.E., Egidijus Meilunas (Ambassador of Lithuania), H. E., Levent Murat Burhan (Ambassador of Turkey) and H.E., Ivan Mašina, (Ambassador of Croatia).