Paul Valent

Paul Valent

MBBS, DPM, FRANZCP
Consultant liaison psychiatrist, psychotherapist, traumatologist,
Co-founder and past president Australasian Society for Traumatic Stress Studies,
Writer.

Child survivors of the Holocaust

Child Survivors of the Holocaust New York: Brunner-Routledge.

By the end of the second world war 1.5 million (90%) of Jewish children had been killed by the Nazis. In this book, ten child survivors tell their stories. Paul Valent, himself a child survivor and psychiatrist, explores with profound analytical insight the deepest memories, overt and covert, of the children he interviewed. At the time of the Holocaust the children varied from 0-16 years of age. They came from different countries and had varied experiences that included being hidden,  and being in ghettoes and concentration camps. Their experiences included starvation, torture, and sexual abuse. Valent explores how they coped over the decades and how they strove to make meaning of their lives.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 2002 Categories: ,

Child survivors; A review. In J. Kestenberg & C. Kahn (Eds.). Children Surviving Persecution: An International Study of Trauma and Healing. Praeger:New York. P 109-123

This chapter reviews the experiences, responses, and consequences of child survivors of the Holocaust over five decades. It reviews their healing or otherwise, and the meanings they made of their lives.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1998 Categories:

Effects of the Holocaust on Jewish child survivors; A review of their traumas and after-effects over 50 years

This is the English translation of the Psyche article above.

One and a half million Jewish children were purposefully murdered in the Holocaust. The 10% who survived are arguably the remnants of historically the most massive trauma applied to a most vulnerable group. Due to the massive starkness of their experiences, child survivors of the Holocaust provide a benchmark of how children’s traumas develop over the life span. This paper describes such developments.

 

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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1998 Categories:

Auswirkungen des Holocaust auf überlebende jüdischer Kinder. Psyche, 8:751-771. (In German)

This paper describes the experiences of child survivors of the Holocaust when they were children. Their varied circumstances, ages, and subsequent memories and  consequences over their lifetimes are examined.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1998 Categories:

Documented childhood trauma (Holocaust): Its sequelae and applications to other traumas. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law. 2:81-90

As part of the argument whether adult symptoms truly reflect childhood traumas (especially sexual abuse), the symptoms of child survivors of the Holocaust (whose traumas were documented) were compared with symptoms of adults who claimed sexual abuses in their childhoods. The symptoms in the two groups were very similar; so were the responses by society to them. The study contributes to the veracity of childhood sexual abuse claims. The symptoms of the two groups incidentally point out the inefficacy of PTSD to describe complex and pervasive post-traumatic symptoms.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1995 Categories: , ,

Ripples of the Holocaust. Talk at Jewish Museum, Melbourne

This paper examines long term consequences of the Holocaust on survivors, child survivors, and second and third generations of Holocaust survivors. It examines the communications and conflicts between the generations, and finally the common story they all share.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 3 July 2003 Categories: , ,

Early Abuse and Its Effects; A Holocaust and Sexual Abuse Survivor. Presentation at the Victorian association of Psychotherapists, AGM

Some highlights of the therapy of Anne, whose story is described in Child Survivors of the Holocaust, are presented. Anne underwent two of the most horrific traumas- the Holocaust and sexual abuse. In therapy Anne faced both sets of traumas. She reclaimed her identity and pride. She is a living example to therapists that one should not despair of any patient’s problems, and that everyone can be helped to a significant degree.

 
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1995 Categories: ,

Resilience in child survivors of the Holocaust: toward the concept of resilience. Psychoanalytic Review; Volume 85, Number 4. pp. 517-535

Children from an early age demonstrated amazing survival attributes and adaptability. This continued as they grew up postwar.  However, the concept of resilience has to be applied with care, because in each person it is admixed with vulnerability, pure luck to have survived, and a long term compound of compromises.

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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: August 1998 Categories:

Not a phoenix. In (Ed.). M Elliot-Kleerkoper, H. Gershoni & F. Kalman. Heirloom; Second Anthology of the Melbourne Child Survivors of the Holocaust. Melbourne: Hybrid. Pp 25-26

Do not be deceived by the apparent resilience and even successes of child survivors of the Holocaust.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 2006 Categories:

A child survivor’s appraisal of his own interview. In J Kestenberg & E Fogelman (Eds.). Children During the Nazi Reign. New York, Praeger. P. 121-135

This chapter describes Paul Valent’s interview with Judith Kestenberg, a discoverer of child survivors of the Holocaust. The chapter describes retrieval of memories and through deep physiological interactions of interviewer and interviewee, explanations of sensations that related to the interviewee’s early traumas.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1994 Categories: ,

Silent No More. (Ed. Nina Stone). Melbourne Child Survivors of the Holocaust Anthology. Melbourne: Child Survivors of the Holocaust. Foreword. pp. 1-2

This anthology is a great achievement by children who were told to be silent. In teh book they speak up, and as a group tell the world their experiences.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1999 Categories:

Banalities. In (Ed. Nina Stone). Silent No More. Melbourne Child Survivors of the Holocaust Anthology. Melbourne: Child Survivors of the Holocaust p 141

Horrible events can seem to banal from outside.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 1999 Categories:

The next chapter. In (Ed.). M Elliot-Kleerkoper, H. Gershoni & F. Kalman. Heirloom; Second Anthology of the Melbourne Child Survivors of the Holocaust. Melbourne: Hybrid. Pp 70-71

My father said, “Be a doctor first; then write.” Writing is my next chapter.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 2006 Categories:

History of the Australian child survivor groups: Melbourne and Sydney. In J. Kestenberg & C. Kahn (Eds.). Children Surviving Persecution: An International Study of Trauma and Healing. Praeger:New York. P 188-194

The chapter provides histories of the two Australian child survivor groups.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent, L Hart Publication Date: 1998 Categories:

Bat/Bar mitzvah of Child Survivors of the Holocaust Melbourne. Centre News. 21:13-14

A synopsis of the first 13 years of the Melbourne child survivors of the Holocaust group.
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Publication Author: Paul Valent Publication Date: 2002 Categories:

Child survivors: the bridge to the future. In (Ed) Stan Marks. Reflections 20 years 1984-2004. Melbourne: Jewish Holocaust Museum and Research Centre

On the 20th anniversary of the Jewish Holocaust Centre in Melbourne, the child survivor group reflects on its special history in the centre as well as on its unique place in Holocaust history.
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