The Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries invites you to a talk from Holocaust survivor Ruth Barnett. On 6 March at 2pm we will welcome to Ruth to the University of Portsmouth‘s Studio 1 Theatre in White Swan Building for a talk, followed by a staged reading of excerpts from her play Justice on Trial performed by UoP students.
In 1939, when Ruth was four years old, she left Germany for the UK as part of the Kindertransport program. Please join us as she shares her incredible story – and her use of the arts as a tool for community learning – on March 6. Dr Christine Berberich, Walid Benkhaled and Dr Erika Hughes have had the pleasure of collaborating on this special event with Ruth, and are thrilled to be able to bring her timely work to campus.
Ruth Barnett, 83, was born in 1935, in a Germany that was already descending into Nazi tyranny. Her Jewish father was a judge who had been deprived of his post and frogmarched out of his court by the SS in 1933; her non-Jewish mother ran a cinema-advertising business in Berlin. “We had a brilliant future in front of us until the Nazis came to power,” she says.
Barnett’s father was in hiding for much of the next six years. But the fact that he was blacklisted and his life was in danger may have helped his two children – Ruth had a brother, Martin, who was three years older than her – get on the list for a Kindertransport to the UK in February 1939. Though only four years old at the time, she recalls the journey from Berlin. “I thought it was a holiday trip,” she says. Her mother, who had a short-term visa, accompanied the two children, left them with a foster family in England and then disappeared. “Neither my brother nor I remember her saying goodbye,” says Barnett.