A.F. van Ravesteijn

Ik was erbij

Dwangarbeider in Duitsland 1942-1945

Debut by a 97-year-old

In the autumn of 1942, Louis van Ravesteijn, an office clerk born in The Hague, is, like thousands of other Dutch nineteen-year-olds, forced to work in Nazi Germany.

The young man ends up in a prisoner-of-war camp where Russian and Ukrainian men and women must work under appalling conditions. He helps where he can and has to constantly weigh up who he can trust. Despite the life-threatening situation, he falls in love. Van Ravesteijn did not keep a journal and it was only much later in life that he wrote down his memories, making his debut at the age of 97. Shortly after publication he passed away. He left behind a unique document, one remarkably well-written and rich in evocative details.

Few will imitate him: debuting at 97. A.F. van Ravesteijn did it. From the first sentence it is clear: he can write.

NRC Handelsblad

A.F. van Ravesteijn

A.F. van Ravesteijn (1922-2020) was working at a printing press in The Hague, when he was sent to Germany for the ‘Arbeitseinsatz’ in 1942. He ended up in Recklinghausen and is forced to work in the administration of a labour camp. After his liberation, the Brits ask him to stay on, because he…

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Ik was erbij. Dwangarbeider in Duitsland 1942-1945 (2020). Non-fictie, 512 pagina's.

Thema's: WOII



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