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Documentary Series // ‘Prisoner of Her Past’

September 27, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Prisoner of Her Past is a 2010 documentary film adapted from Howard Reich’s book by the same name and the latest installment in the Library Society’s Documentary Screening series. The film grapples with the lives and experiences of those impacted by World War II, confronting the past and unraveling a family history.

This program is supported by South Carolina Humanities, a not-for-profit organization; inspiring, engaging and enriching South Carolinians with programs on literature, history, culture and heritage. SC Humanities receives funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Democracy Demands Wisdom.

Tickets are $10 for members, $15 for the public.
To purchase tickets, click here or call 843-723-9912 during box office hours.

About the Film:
On the night of Feb. 15, 2001, 69-year-old Holocaust survivor Sonia Reich ran out of her house in Skokie, Illinois, telling police she feared someone was going to “put a bullet in my head.” It took Howard, her son, a year to find a doctor who came up with a specific diagnosis: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. In effect, Sonia was reliving her unspoken childhood as a Jew running for her life from Nazis. Sixty years later, Howard traveled the world to discover her untold story. He learned that of the 12,000 Jews in Sonia’s small town of Dubno, Poland, less than 100 escaped machine-gun executions; his mother was one. Prisoner of Her Past (originally published as The First and Final Nightmare of Sonia Reich) illuminates the demons that haunt Howard’s mother to this day.

About SC Humanities:
The mission of South Carolina Humanities is to enrich the cultural and intellectual lives of all South Carolinians. This not-for-profit organization presents and/or supports literary initiatives, lectures, exhibits, festivals, publications, oral history projects, videos and other humanities-based experiences that reach more than 250,000 citizens annually. South Carolina Humanities receives funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities as well as corporate, foundation and individual donors. It is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors comprised of community leaders from throughout the state.


Charleston Library Society
164 King Street
Charleston, SC 29401 United States
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