Professor Roger Frie's new book confronts an unspoken Nazi past in his German family

May 08, 2017

SFU Professor Roger Frie's new book Not in My Family is receiving international attention and praise. In his new book, Frie sets out to confront an unspoken Nazi history in his German family. With remarkable courage, he seeks to transform his family narrative into an understanding of the Holocaust’s forbidding reality.

The son of German postwar immigrants who were children during World War II, and with grandparents who were participants in the War, he uses the history of his family to explore the moral and psychological implications of memory against the backdrop of one of humanity's darkest periods. From his perspective of a life lived across German and Jewish contexts, Frie explores what it means to discover the legacy of a Nazi past. 

“Bringing the unspoken into words, the breaking of taboo and, in the process, exposing one’s vulner­ability, is not easy work or for the faint of heart. Reading this book kindled many memories of my own history growing up, where there was rampant anti-Semitism, in a neighborhood where there were very few Jews. I grew up with an ever-present sense of fear, inherited from my family’s history, and frequently heard derogatory remarks that often kept me from disclosing my Jewish identity. This is one of the powers of Not in My Family. Reading Roger Frie’s story compels us all to remember our own. . . . This is a remarkable work.” -- Jeff Sugerman, Simon Fraser University 

Learn more about Frie's new book and purchase a copy through Oxford University Press Canada