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The Altruistic Personality: rescuers of jews in nazi europe
Format: Book
Publication Year: 1988
Publisher: Touchstone
Place of Publication: New York
Source ID: shanti-sources-47771
Collection: Altruism
Abstract: Samuel P. Oliner was ten years old when his entire family was murdered by the Nazis in Poland. Thanks to the help of a Polish Christian woman, he found a place to hide through the war—and survive. His experience left him with a profound, lifelong sense of wonder and a question which was the origin of this book.In a time of extreme danger, what led this woman, and a few thousand like her, to risk her own life and the lives of her family to help those who were marked for death—even total strangers—while others stood passively by? To answer that complex and critically important question, Samuel and Pearl Oliner undertook the massive Altruistic Personality Project, which interviewed over 700 rescuers and nonrescuers living in Poland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Italy during the Nazi occupation. Drawing on the data from this study, "The Altruistic Personality" explores the experiences and motivations of those uncommon individuals who aided Jews without compensation of any kind—and with full knowledge of the fatal consequences that would befall them if their actions were discovered.