Janina Bauman (1926–2009)

Author of Winter in the Morning

Includes the names: Janina Baumann

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Janina Bauman, née Lewinson, was born in Warsaw into a family of assimilated, well-to-do Polish Jews. Her father was a surgeon and army officer. Nazi Germany's invasion of her country in 1939 put an end to her idyllic childhood. At age 14, Janina, along with her sister Zosia and their mother, was trapped in the Warsaw Ghetto and constantly on the run to avoid deportation. In January 1943, the three women managed to flee the Ghetto and were hidden on the Aryan side of Warsaw by friends and members of the Polish resistance. Janina contracted tuberculosis. After the failure of the Warsaw Uprising, the three women fled to southern Poland. It was while hiding in the house of a peasant woman in the countryside that Janina learned of the death of her father in the massacre of Polish officers at Katyn Forest, from a list of victims in a newspaper spread on the kitchen floor over which she was peeling potatoes. She survived the war, studied journalism at the Warsaw Academy of Social Sciences, and in 1948 married Zygmunt Bauman, with whom she had three daughters. She worked in the Polish film industry until rising anti-Semitic persecution compelled the family to leave Poland for Israel in 1968. Three years later, they emigrated to the UK, settling in Leeds, West Yorkshire. She wrote her autobiography in two volumes, Winter in the Morning (1986), based on diaries she kept as a young girl, and A Dream of Belonging (1988). They were republished together in one volume as Beyond These Walls in 2007.
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