Rahel Liebeschütz-Plaut, Diary No. 19, Hamburg, 1922

Source Description

In 1923, Rahel Plaut became the first woman to habilitate at the Medical Faculty in Hamburg and the third woman ever to do so in Germany, with a thesis on isometric contractions in skeletal muscle. In this excerpt from her 1922 diary, she describes her attendance of the 34th Congress of the German Society of Internal Medicine Deutsche Gesellschaft für Innere Medizin in Wiesbaden in April 1922. The Congress of Internists was one of the most important congresses of scientific exchange. In 1922, only one woman, the internist Klotilde Meier, gave a lecture. Rahel Plaut, with the help of Otto Kestner (born Cohnheim), who ceded his time to contribute to the discussion to her, was able to present her research results, which were also recognized by her colleagues. The notes are included in diary no. 19 of a total of 73 written by Rahel Liebeschütz-Plaut between the age of eight and 98. They were more important to her than her scientific papers, which she did not take with her into emigration. The diaries were not written continuously, some volumes have large gaps of one to two months while some closely describe every day. She rarely gives information about her feelings, and her opinions about other people are sometimes quite harsh. Her diaries are a treasure trove of experienced history and provide insight into personal, professional and political matters as well as into the inner workings of institutions such as the Eppendorf Hospital. The diaries served as a source for her biographical notes about her father as well as her manuscript about her time in Hamburg from 1932 to 1938, which she wrote for her grandchildren at the age of 85. The 73 diaries, along with many other records, are held in the family archive in Winchester. Maggie Carver has kindly given me the diaries not only for digitization but also for further use.
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Recommended Citation

Rahel Liebeschütz-Plaut, Diary No. 19, Hamburg, 1922 (translated by Insa Kummer), edited in: Key Documents of German-Jewish History, <https://dx.doi.org/10.23691/jgo:source-223.en.v1> [July 19, 2024].