Hanny Michaelis

Hanny Michaelis (1922–2007) was born in Amsterdam. In 1941 she took her school leaving exams and shortly afterwards she and her parents went, separately, into hiding. They never saw each other again. Hanny’s parents were arrested in 1943 and were taken first to the camp at Westerbork and then to Sobibor, where they were murdered. Shortly after the liberation of the Netherlands, Michaelis returned to Amsterdam, where she stayed for the rest of her life. For years she worked in the Amsterdam city council’s department of artistic affairs. She also published six collections of poetry. Her wartime diaries recently appeared in two volumes, both of which were enthusiastically received.

No Spring in May & The World I Stand Outside

No Spring in May & The World I Stand Outside

Wartime Diaries 1940-1945

(G.A. van Oorschot, 2016, 942 pages)

When the personal effects of one of the most important post-war Dutch poets, Hanny Michaelis, were found to include her diary from the German occupation of the Netherlands, it caused a literary sensation. Like Anne Frank, Michaelis was Jewish and forced into hiding. Inevitably, the diary is being compared with Anne Frank’s.

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