6: Photograph, self-portrait by Leah Goldberg, circa 1935.
This photograph is reportedly a self-portrait of the poet, taken in her room in the city of Kovno (today Kaunas, Lithuania) shortly before Goldberg emigrated to Palestine. Goldberg had an interest in photography and posed for many portraits in her lifetime.
Suggested activities: Have the students analyze the photograph.What elements make up this scene? How many of them appear to be staged? If this is indeed a self-portrait, what image of herself is Goldberg trying to convey here? How does Goldberg in 1935 wish for us to see her? Discuss this photograph in relation to the fourth stanza of Goldberg's poem. Ask the students to consider the limits of the photograph and to discuss how photographs help us remember. Do photographs give us an accurate or distorted image of the past, of ourselves? To what extent does Goldberg’s poem reflect on those limits?
Source: Leah Goldberg, self-portrait, circa 1935. This photograph is republished here with the permission of Gnazim, the Archive of Hebrew Writers, Israel.