Books to fall for
Forest Daughters (Meža meitas)
The end of the WWII proved to be a significant turning point in the history of the Baltic States, one that dramatically changed the life course of its residents. For ideological reasons and for personal safety many thousands of people, among them many women, flooded into the Baltic forests at the beginning of the Cold War, in order to resist the Soviet rule and to seek shelter.
Baltic women fled to forest to escape intimidation and physical coercion, and because close relatives had been arrested and harassed. The forest did not provide women who had experienced Soviet persecution with a tranquil life but with a difficult survival school, replete with emotional and physical hardships. It also involved them in the first war in which Baltic women were on the front lines. Having gone into the woods to seek temporary shelter, they in effect were civilians who ended up in a war zone without weapons or training for battle.
The autobiographic book “Forest Daughters” by Sanita Reinsone is based on twelve personal accounts and reveals the hidden war through the eyes of Latvian women who joined active partisan groups or lived quiet but officially illegal personal lives in the forest after WWII. The book’s twelve chapters are accompanied by historical photographs drawn from the former KGB archives and private family archives.
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