(1891 - 1970)
Nelly Sachs was born in Berlin,
Germany on December 10, 1891. She is most recognized as a dramatist
and poet in addition to a spokeswoman for the Jews. In 1940, with the
spread of Nazi power,
and persecution of the Jews in Europe, Sachs escaped with her mother
to Sweden. However, the experiences
and emotions of Nazi persecution and the Holocaust left a deep impression on her memory. It was these memories of the Jewish
people’s devastation that influenced much of Sachs’ writing.
At the age of 15, after
reading Gösta Berling by Swedish
author Selma Lagerlöf, who received the Nobel
Prize for Literature in 1909, Sachs and
Lagerlöf became correspondents.
Lagerlöf instructed the adolescent Sachs on the techniques of imagination
and creativity. In 1940, Lagerlöf helped Sachs flee to Sweden,
but died before Nelly arrived. In 1947, Sachs published her first volume
of poetry, In den Wohnungen des Todes (In the Houses of Death).
Through these poems and future volumes, including Und niemand weiss
weiter (And No One Knows Where to Go) finished
in 1957, she laments over the horrors of
the Holocaust as well as the exile of the
Jewish people. Nelly Sachs powerfully illustrates
her poetry by using metaphors and symbolic
Nelly Sachs was awarded the Nobel
Prize for Literature
in 1966 alongside the Israeli writer Shmuel
Yosef Agnon. At that moment, Sachs realized that while Agnon embodied
the future of the Jewish people in Israel, she stated “I represent
the tragedy of the Jewish people.”
Nelly Sachs passed away
from cancer on May 12, 1970.
Sachs Autobiography”; Pegasos