About Ellen

Ellen CassedyEllen Cassedy, the author of We Are Here, has explored Lithuania’s encounter with its Jewish heritage, including the Holocaust, for ten years.  Her book is the winner of numerous awards. She is a frequent speaker about the Holocaust, Lithuania, and Jewish culture. Her tips for writers are featured on SheWrites, the online women writers' community.

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Upcoming Speaking Engagements

Ellen Cassedy speaks to a variety of audiences about the Holocaust, Lithuania, and Jewish culture.

See all of Ellen's speaking engagements or invite Ellen to speak to your community.

Recent Publications

Ellen writes frequently about the Holocaust, Lithuania, and Jewish culture.

Read her most recent publications:

Learning Yiddish in Lithuania, Huffington Post

Sigitas Parulskis: Darkness & Co.,Cosmonauts Avenue

Remembering Jewish Names in Lithuania, Huffington Post

Atsimenant Lietuvos žydų vardus ,Bernardinai.lt

Facing History in Lithuania, Na’amat Woman magazine

Is Vilniaus geto: dulkes ir ryztas, Bernardinai.lt

A Summer at the Vilnius Yiddish Institute (in Yiddish!) Afn Shvel

I Am Here: A Jewish woman’s journey to Lithuania, Na’amat Woman magazine

Samuel Bak: Painter of the Vilna Ghetto, VilNews

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Awards and Reviews

• Grub Street National Book Prize for Nonfiction
• Towson Prize for Literature
• Prakhin International Literary Foundation Award
• Silver Medal in History, ForeWord Reviews
• Best Book Award, Assoc. for the Advancement of Baltic Studies
• Shortlist, William Saroyan International Prize for Writing

National Geographic says: Visit Vilnius, and read We Are Here before you go!

"In the Cauldron," a review by Christopher R. Browning New York Review of Books "Cassedy resists Lithuanian attempts to place Jewish and Lithuanian suffering 'side by side'....She attempts to know and comprehend rather than judge."

Book Review: We Are Here: Memories of the Lithuanian Holocaust, by Philip K. Jason Jewish Book Council "Brilliantly balanced, totally engaging, and constantly penetrating."

Book Review: We Are Here, by Sean Martin American Association for Polish-Jewish Studies “Unusually engaging…a model for the study of interethnic relations.”

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Beautiful Hills of Brooklyn

Ellen’s award-winning play, Beautiful Hills of Brooklyn, celebrates the spare beauty of a small but important life. It was adapted into a short film that won 18 festival awards and qualified for an Academy Award nomination.

"After my great-aunt Jessie died," Ellen writes, "I discovered a diary she’d kept and found myself mesmerized. I wanted her voice to be heard."

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