· The essay ·
"We must have the courage to say it. Have the courage to speak the name of God", Etty Hillesum wrote in the amazing pages of her human and spiritual journey that, passing through the smoke of Auschwitz, was directed, however, towards heaven towering above her. And that she - a young Jewish girl - learned to see precisely in the horror of the camp. A journey in which the body of Etty was able to transform the desire for the other into a human relation with the other. A journey that two people today - Father Alessandro Barban, prior general of the Camaldolese, and Antonio Carlo Dall'Acqua a married layman working in creative financing - have retraced, step by step, with her. The result is Etty Hillesum. Osare Dio (Cittadella Editrice, 2012), an elaborate volume that accompanies the reader in understanding the "girl who could not kneel", starting from the oldest photographic document of the Hillesum family, dated 1931. Throughout history, many men have tried (or claimed) to tell and explain using their own words, the words of great women. Few people have, however, traced paths that – truly drawing one out of oneself – are worth the effort of reading and remembering.
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