Two Stories of History and Survival

Thursday, December 13, 5-7pm
Hotel Posada de Aldea, Ancha de San Antonio 15

San Miguel Literary Sala Presents

Mamie Spiegel
“Aspects of Colonial Life in Mexico City”
and Elizabeth Rosner Survivor Cafe

Hotel Posada de Aldea
Ancha de San Antonio #15

$100 pesos ($50 pesos for Literary Sala members)

Complimentary Wine Reception

Literary Sala Presents Two Stories of History and Survival
By Carole Schor

The Literary Sala is pleased to present two distinguished and acclaimed authors talking about very different periods of history.

Mamie Spiegel has written her second book about the Mexican Revolution of 1810, San Miguel de Allende: Colonial Society and the War of Independence. She says there is new material in this latest book, especially regarding what happened on the day Ignacio Allende seized the town of San Miguel on September 16th, 1810.

In her presentation, Mamie will enlighten us about the surprising aspects of daily life in colonial Mexico. She says, “You will wake up in the house of the richest man in Mexico, a miner named Pedro Romero Terreros. You will get dressed, eat breakfast, take a journey outside, and learn many details about life in Mexico in the 1800s, some of them shocking. Like how dirty everything was, outside of the house. Like the enormous weight poor people regularly bore on their backs. I'll save other stunning revelations for the talk.” Mamie is an exceptionally fine storyteller, as many will know from the fascinating historic walking tours she gives for Patronato Pro Niños.

Elizabeth Rosner, the celebrated author of three novels plus her new narrative entitled Survivor Café, will talk about more recent history: the Holocaust and World War II. Survivor Café is about the history of suffering and traumatic stress, mainly of survivors of the Holocaust, and how that stress makes its way through the bones and bodies of the generations that follow. Rosner, the daughter of Holocaust survivors, tells her tale by interweaving her personal experience of visiting Buchenwald concentration camp with her father, who was imprisoned their while a teenager, with psychological studies of “epigenetics:” how the impact of an horrific experience affects not only the person who experienced it, but also the children and grandchildren of the survivor. Similar legacies are found among descendants of African American slaves, descendants of Cambodian survivors of the Killing Fields, descendants of survivors of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the effects of 9/11 on the general population. Today, as firsthand survivors of many of the twentieth century's most monumental events begin to pass away, Survivor Café addresses urgent questions: How do we carry those stories forward? How do we collectively ensure that the horrors of the past are not forgotten?

We are honored that Liz Rosner, a perennial favorite, is returning to the Sala to present her current book. Her presentations are beautiful and memorable.

The Big Read
This evening, we will also launch this season’s Big Read. Everyone in town is invited to read the selected novel: The Shadow Queen by 2019 Writers’ Conference keynote speaker, Sandra Gulland. At this Sala event, you will have the opportunity to purchase the book and also to sign up to participate in one of many discussion groups taking place all over town. If you would like to participate in a group and are unable to attend the launch, write to Nancy Stich at


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