I was going through some old boxes the other day when I found a beat up old notebook that contained a journal of my trip to the Philippines almost nine years ago.My travel journals haven't been quite so detailed in the years since I returned from the Philippines -- mainly due to the professional demands of travel writing, which takes up most of my note-taking time on the road.Nevertheless, I believe that keeping a travel journal can be one of the most rewarding habits a person can keep on the road.
Von Trotta, one of Europe's preeminent filmmakers with a special gift for portraying strong women, has previously chronicled the story of 20th century Germany in such films as "Rosa Luxemburg" and "The Pledge." It took her some 10 years to complete the cycle by documenting her country's "darkest period" in "Rosenstrasse."
While staying true to the basic facts, she has dramatized the story by telling it largely through the eyes of a young American Jewish woman, Hannah Weinstein (Maria Schrader).
"My work was driven by a sense of imminent loss," writes Frédéric Brenner in the introduction to his new book, "Diaspora: Homelands in Exile." "Two thousand years of history were about to vanish. I felt a desire and a responsibility to document these permutations of survival in exile before they disappeared.... As I began my journey, I realized how much loss had already taken place."