Myrna Katz Frommer, 80, Dies; Oral Historian of Catskills and BrooklynHistorians in the News
tags: obituaries, oral history
Myrna Katz Frommer, who channeled the voices of comedians and busboys in the Catskills and teachers and rabbis in Brooklyn through vivid oral histories she created with her husband, died on Aug. 8 at her home in Lyme, N.H. She was 80.
Ms. Frommer edited her husband’s many books, which were frequently about baseball, before he submitted them. But she was not a sports fan. When they began to work on oral histories in the late 1980s, however, they found common ground.
Their first book, “It Happened in the Catskills” (1991), started as a conventional narrative history of the fast-fading world of summer resorts and bungalow colonies known as the borscht belt. But they recognized that the stories they were hearing from waiters, guests, agents, bellhops and other personalities would be better told in their own voices.
“To capture a phenomenon shortly before it disappears into the mists of memory,” they wrote, “there may be no medium more effective than oral history.”
comments powered by Disqus
- Chris Hayes on How Police Treat Black Americans like Colonial Subjects
- 5 Ways to Rebuild Labor and Transform America
- Trump's Praise for China over Tiananmen Square Years ago was a Preview of his Support for Military Crackdowns on the George Floyd Protests
- For the First Time in 30 Years, Hong Kong Will Not Hold a Mass Vigil Commemorating the Tiananmen Square Massacre
- America's New Nihilism
- Why Teachers, Not Reformers, Should “Reimagine Education”
- COVID, Race, and a Pivotal Moment for America
- The Memo: Trump Lags in Polls as Crises Press
- Explaining the Insurrection Act of 1807 and Looking Back on Nixon’s Law & Order Campaign (Podcast)
- Trump Declared Himself the 'President of Law and Order.' Here's What People Get Wrong About the Origins of That Idea