Dory Sontheimer

Dory Sontheimer, protagonista de Les set caixes
“I was born in Barcelona. I am a Catholic and a descendant of a Jewish German family. This is me. A strange combination. I love the Mediterranean land and, despite the history, also that country that once repudiated my family.

October 7, 2002 was a gray day. We had just buried my mother after a long illness. After a few days, in her house, picking up her things  -specifically, dismantling her life- seven boxes appeared in the attic of my maiden room. Closed, and perfectly aligned, they were numbered and labeled. I sensed that the documents contained in those boxes must have been important, but I could not imagine, even remotely, the extent to which my soul was tormented. I could not have imagined that in these seven boxes I would find, in full, the chronicle of my family.

Seven days it took God to create the world and seven arms has the candlestick, symbol of Judaism, called “Menorah”. They represent the seven days of the week. In my case, I have created my own “menorah” with the boxes I found: curiosity, intrigue, search for truth, faith, love, freedom and – the central arm – homage.

It took me years to digest the content of these seven boxes. They have awakened in me the desire to know the past. Now I can understand the silence of my parents. A silence born of fear. Fear that would endanger their existence and the one of their descendants. Fear of rejection, of intolerance.

This Documentary and the book on which it is based (published in spanish and catalan language) will serve to pay tribute to people who, like my parents and a large part of my family, had to endure contempt, insult, social humiliation and denial of human dignity. They will help my descendants to take pride in their origins. Each and every one of us are a result of our history.”

Dory Sontheimer