The Heart Has Reasons by Mark Klempner

About The Heart Has Reasons: Holocaust Rescuers and Their Stories of Courage

“You can’t let people be treated in an inhuman way around you.... Otherwise you start to become inhuman.”

So declares rescuer Hetty Voûte in The Heart Has Reasons, a book that provides an in-depth look into the hearts and minds of the Holocaust rescuers and explores the meaning that their lives and deeds have for us today.

Individually or in small “humanitarian cells,” the ten Dutch people profiled in The Heart Has Reasons saved the lives of thousands of Jewish children during the Nazi occupation of Holland. How did they do what they did—and why did they risk everything to do it?

Although the details of their extraordinary rescue activities vary greatly, the rescuers’ integrity does not. Thus these narratives provide not only a window on the past but a vision for the future. Framed by Klempner’s own quest for meaning, the words of the rescuers resonate across generations, providing timeless insight into how people of conscience can navigate ethically in an increasingly complex world.

About Author Mark Klempner

Mark Klempner is a folklorist, historian, and social commentator. The son of an immigrant who barely escaped the Holocaust, Klempner spent nearly a decade talking with and getting to know the Dutch rescuers in order to write The Heart Has Reasons: Holocaust Rescuers and Their Stories of Courage. Klempner grew up in New York, and attended Cornell University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa in 1997, and winning a J. William Fulbright Fellowship. In 2000, he received an M.A. in folklore from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Klempner’s articles have appeared internationally in professional publications such as the Oral History Reader, as well as in the Christian Science Monitor, Baltimore Sun, and other mainstream newspapers and periodicals. He has also been featured as a radio commentator on Morning Edition, and has been interviewed on NPR, and other broadcast media. Online, Klempner is a blogger for The Huffington Post and has contributed to Alternet.org and CommonDreams.org.

Click to read a newspaper article about Mark Klempner entitled Tales of Courage Changed His Life: Klempner's Meetings With Holocaust Rescuers.


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