Podcasts

This is an interview on “Letters of Stone” with Roni Mikel Arieli, the Department of Jewish History and Contemporary Jewry, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The interview was conducted as part of the European Research Council Project “Apartheid–The Global Itinerary: South African Cultural Formations in Transnational Circulation, 1948-1990” under the supervision of Professor Louise Bethlehem.

Sue Grant-Marshall interviewing Steven Robins about his book, Letters of Stone (28th of January 2016)

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Reading Matters hosted by Sue Grant-Marshall is broadcast on Thursdays from 10h00 to 10h30 (GMT+2) and repeated on Sundays at 16h00 (GMT+2). Radio Today broadcasts on 1485 MW (AM) in Johannesburg and countrywide on DStv Audio Channel 869. Radio Today streams on its website www.1485.org.za and on 1485.mobi.


Karen Key interview (23rd of March 2016)
Karen Key (‘Time to Travel’) talks with Steven Robins about ‘Letters of Stone’.

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Classic FM interview (24th of February 2016)
Tamara talks with Steven Robins in studio about ‘Letters of Stone’.

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Cape Talk ‘Afternoons with Pippa’ interview with Steven Robins

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Podcast: 09/02/16: Book launch interview at the Book Lounge, Cape Town, South Africa: Steven Robins @PenguinBooksSA:

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Podcast: 28/01/16: Reading Matters @SueGrantMarshal: Steven Robins @PenguinBooksSA:
Sue Grant-Marshall interviewing Steven Robins about his book, Letters of Stone – From Nazi Germany to South Africa.  Published by @PenguinBooksSA. Letters of Stone, by professor Steven Robins, tracks his journey of discovery about his family’s lives and fate in southern Africa, Berlin, Riga and Auschwitz. It also explores the worldwide rise of eugenics and racial science before WW 2 which the Nazis used to justify their mass murder of Jews.

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Podcast: 02/02/16: SAFM LITERATURE – Nancy Richards interviews Steven Robins

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Videos

Media, news, reviews & articles

Letters of Stone book review by Koen Stroeken of Ghent Unversity


Click here to read the review

Photos taken  in Berlin by Rhoda Malgas (June 2018)


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Holocaust story tells how material things make a scaffold for people’s memories
September 10, 2017 10.34am SAST (from ‘The Conversation.com’ – Academic rigour, journalistic flair ) 


Placed outside the homes where deported Jews had last lived, they commemorated the painful history of Jewish expulsion and extermination. Surprisingly, then, the Stolpersteine placed for members of the Robinski family also appeared to locate South African memory in the streets of Berlin.

The installation of the Stolpersteine formed part of Robins’s decades long journey, told in his book “Letters of Stone”, to trace his family history and restore their dignity as Holocaust victims. The book revolves around a careful reading of a collection of handwritten letters but it also references the history of anthropology and German race science in southern Africa. “Letters of Stone” ties the personal story of restitution into an academic history linking Germany and South Africa. Read more…

 

Letters of Stone: An exhibition – the fate of a Jewish family in Berlin
Sat. 15 July 2017 exhibition review by Heike Becker


Stevletters-of-stone-1en Robins’ long-term project of tracing his family’s past from South Africa to Berlin and back has recently taken a productive new turn with the opening of an extraordinary exhibition at the Kreuzberg-Friedrichshain Museum in Berlin.

The exhibition, conceived by Stellenbosch University Anthropologist Robins and the museum, and curated by Matthias Rosenthal, is built around the more than one hundred letters that were sent, to the family’s two sons who succeeded to emigrate to South Africa and Northern Rhodesia (today’s Zambia) respectively. The letters were sent mostly by their mother and sister in Berlin, between 1936 when Herbert Robinski, Steven’s father arrived in South Africa and 1942 when the members of the family who had remained trapped in Berlin were deported to Riga and Auschwitz. These extraordinary original papers are contextualised with a documentation of the Robinskis’ earlier family history and a timeline that highlights the increasing suffocation of Jewish life in Germany over the course of the 1930s and early 1940s. READ MORE…

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Review of Letters of Stone in TYDSKRIF VIR LETTERKUNDE • 54 (1) • 2017 by  Tilman Dedering


Read a  review of Letters of Stone that appeared in the TYDSKRIF VIR LETTERKUNDE • 54 (1) • 2017 by  Tilman Dedering (dedertm@unisa.ac.za) University of South Africa Pretoria (2.DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17159/tvl.v.54i1.18) – Please click here

Cape Town Holocaust Centre Talk by Steven Robins  – November 2016


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Professor Steven Robins gave a talk on his book ‘Letters of Stone: From Nazi Germany to South Africa’ – a book which Antjie Krog has described as ‘exceptional and unforgettable’. Steven spoke about the lives and fates of his family, the Robinskis, in their struggle to flee Nazi Germany as it became increasingly more dangerous to stay, and increasingly more difficult to find a way out.

Click here to view the gallery on our Gallery page.

Announcing the German translation of ‘Letters of Stone’ by Steven Robins – posted on the 28th of July 2016

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Review of Letters of Stone in the Cape Argus by John Boje on the 9th of May 2016 Please click here. – posted 10 May 2016


Review of Letters of Stone on Writers Write: http://writers-write-reviews.posthaven.com/book-review-letters-of-stone


Review of Letters of Stone in the Pretoria News by John Boje on the 18th of April 2016 Please click here. – posted 19 April 2016


Review of Letters of Stone in the Financial Mail by David Gorin on the 24th of March 2016 Please click here. – posted 04 April 2016


Review of Letters of Stone in the Rapport Weekly newspaper by Terry Shakinovsky on the 27th of March 2016 Please click here. – posted 04 April 2016


Review of Letters of Stone by Heike Becker, Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of the Western Cape on the Medical Anthropology blog (http://www.medizinethnologie.net/) Please click here. – posted 03 April 2016


Delving Deeper into Letters of Stone with Steven Robins with Elen Botha of 9Lives (A Digital Media Platform by Lumico). Please click here. – posted 03 March 2016


Review in the Cape Times by Karin Schimke on the 25th of February 2016. Please click here. – posted 29 February 2016


Review in the Springs Advertiser by Samantha Keogh on the 25th of February 2016. Please click here. – posted 29 February 2016


Steven Robins spoke to Morning Live presenter Samm Marshall on SABC Digital News recently. Please click here (or view below) – posted 26 February 2016


Cape Talk online article related to Steven Robins’ interview on The Pippa Hudson show– posted 26 February 2016


Article that appeared in DIE BEELD, DIE BURGER, DIE BURGER OOS KAAP, VOLKSBLAD – 22 February 2016


Professor Aubrey Herbst’s (Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University) response to ‘Letters of Stone’ – 17 February 2016


Jewish Report ‘Letters of Stone’ book review


Books Live review by Antjie Krog


Saturday Star newspaper article – 23 January 2016


The Star newspaper article – 25 January 2016


The Herald newspaper article – 25 January 2016


The Daily News newspaper article – 25 January 2016


Marianne Thamm’s Daily Maverick review of Letters of Stone – 5 February 2016


Sunday Times Coverage – 7 February 2016


Letters in the SA Jewish Report – 11 February 2016

Purchase Letters of Stone

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GFI Gallery launch in Port Elizabeth

Steven Robins will be in conversation with Dr Aubrey Herbst.

Date: Wednesday, 9th of March
Time: 18:00 for 18:30
Venue: GFI Gallery, 30 Park Drive, Port Elizabeth
RSVP: Fogarty’s Bookshop on 041 368 1425 or fogartys@global.co.za

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Terry Kurgan, Catherine Burns, and Victoria J. Collis-Buthelezi in conversation with Steven Robins.

At the heart of Letters of Stone: From Nazi Germany to South Africa, is an archive of almost a hundred letters sent from the author’s family in Berlin during the Nazi terror, to his father in South Africa. This correspondence is both the key to a devastating family mystery, as well as a means of exploring the ways in which the rise of eugenics and racial science was worked out in devastatingly intimate ways within families forced to flee Europe, and to make desperately difficult choices on their journeys around the world.  

Part memoir, and part history of the Holocaust and the long shadow it still casts, Steven Robins’s new book asks important questions about guilt, belonging, and our complicated relationship with the past.  

Steven Robins is a professor in the Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology at the University of Stellenbosch. He has written on a wide range of topics, including the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the politics of land and identity, and social movements and popular politics in South Africa. Apart from his academic writings, Steven is also a regular newspaper op-ed contributor on issues of public concern.  

Wednesday, 24th February 2016, 6:00 – 7:30  

WiSER Seminar Room, 6th Floor, Richard Ward Building, East Campus, Wits University  

Drinks will be served. 

RSVP: Najibha.Deshmukh@wits.ac.za


Love Books launch

Steven Robins will be in conversation with Terry Shakinovsky, Chai FM presenter.

Date: Tuesday, 23rd of February
Time: 18:00 for 18:30
Venue: Love Books, The Bamboo Lifestyle Centre, 53 Rustenburg Road, Melville
RSVP: Love Books on 011 726 7408 or kate@lovebooks.co.za

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Kalk Bay Books launch

Steven Robins will be in conversation with Marc Gevisser.

Date: Thursday, 3rd of March
Time: 18:00 for 18:30
Venue: Kalk Bay Books, 124 Main Road, Kalk Bay
RSVP: Kalk Bay Books on 021 788 2266 or events@kalkbaybooks.co.za by the 29th of February.

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Stellenbosh book launch details

The Stellenbosch University Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology will launch of ‘Letters of Stone’ by Steven Robins and the exhibition of “The Chair” by Greer Valley.

The event will be held at the Stellenbosch Sasol Art Museum on Tuesday, 16 February, at 4 PM.

In her review for the Sunday Times, Michele Magwood said: “Letters of Stone is the story of the weight of memory, of the burden of guilt and regret; of the obliteration of hope, of identity, of human beings.”


The Book Lounge Launch details


Books Live review by Antjie Krog


Buy ‘Letters from Stone’ locally (South Africa)

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