‘The Dead Are My Teachers’: The Scrolls of Auschwitz in Jerome Rothenberg’s Khurbn

  • Dominic Williams
Part of the The Holocaust and Its Contexts book series (HOLC)


As Dan Stone notes (this volume), the Scrolls of Auschwitz have received remarkably little attention from historians of the Holocaust. In addition to the limited number of discussions in the historiography, however, an extraordinary literary response to these documents can be found in Jerome Rothenberg’s long poem Khurbn (1989), two sections of which name authors of the Scrolls and quote some of their words directly. This essay argues that Rothenberg’s incorporation of the Scrolls into his own work brings to the fore aspects of these texts that historians have had much greater difficulty coming to terms with.


Death Camp Literary Device Free Citizen Automatic Writing Jewish American Identity 
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© Dominic Williams 2013

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  • Dominic Williams

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