About the Book
A careful reconstruction of the life of Guido Goldman, founder of the German Marshall Fund and Harvard University’s Center for European Studies.
“In his distinguished career, Guido Goldman has made important contributions to both the American and German societies in art, education, and their political evolution. He has created essential institutions to enhance the interaction of America and Germany. And he has been an inspiring and reliable friend through a long life.”—Henry Kissinger
The son of Nahum Goldmann, who was the founder of the World Jewish Congress, Guido Goldman was one of the most distinguished protagonists of the reintegration of Germany into the international community after the defeat of Nazism in 1945. His large network of friends and interlocutors included Willy Brandt and Helmut Kohl, Henry Kissinger and Ronald Reagan, Harry Belafonte and Marlene Dietrich. His generous philanthropy extended to the preservation of non-Western cultures threatened by extinction, such as the IKAT project through which he revived the unique ancient textile arts of Central Asia.
From the preface
Almost no one knows about Goldman. Although not without vanity, he never sought the spotlight, preferring to hang back quietly, pulling strings from behind the scenes. Nonetheless, he was a key figure in contemporary history; his life story reflects the twists and turns of a century of German, Jewish, European, and American history. His biography allows us to observe the continued impact of the Nazi era, the Cold War, and American racism; as if through a magnifying glass, we can examine the abysses, hopes, longings, successes, and defeats of the twentieth century. These twentieth-century events and emotions have not disappeared; they continue to resonate in our own world.