18 November 1910|
Lemberg, Galicia, Austria-Hungary
|Died||19 October 1988
Weinreb grew up in Scheveningen, Netherlands, to which his family had moved in 1916, and became notorious for selling a fictitious escape route for Jews from the occupied Netherlands in the Second World War. When his scheme fell apart in 1944, he left his home in Scheveningen and went in hiding in Ede. He was imprisoned for 3½ years after the war for fraud as well as collaboration with the German occupier. In his memoirs published in 1969 he maintained that his plans were to give Jews hope for survival and that he had assumed that the liberation of the Netherlands would take place before his customers were deported. The debate about his guilt or innocence—called the “Weinreb affair”—was very heated in the Netherlands in the 1970s, involving noted writers like Renate Rubinstein and Willem Frederik Hermans.
Weinreb remained in the Netherlands until 1968, after which he emigrated to Switzerland.
Even after his death in 1988 the discussion about Weinreb in the Netherlands has not come to an end. In a Dutch biography by Regina Grüter published in 1997, Een fantast schrijft geschiedenis, Weinreb was depicted as a sufferer from Pseudologia fantastica. Others pointed out the merits in his religious kabbalistic work.
Weinreb's writings entail more than 50 titles. The following list offers only a selection.
- Schöpfung im Wort. Die Struktur der Bibel in jüdischer Überlieferung. ISBN 3-88411-028-4 ()
- Buchstaben des Lebens. Erzählt nach jüdischer Überlieferung. ISBN 3-88411-038-1 ()
- Zahl, Zeichen, Wort. Das symbolische Universum der Bibelsprache. ISBN 3-88411-031-4 ()
- Das jüdische Passahmahl und was dabei von der Erlösung erzählt wird. ISBN 3-88411-026-8 ()
- Die Astrologie in der jüdischen Mystik. ISBN 3-88411-012-8 ()
- Kabbala im Traumleben des Menschen. ISBN 3-424-01161-4 ()
- Innenwelt des Wortes im Neuen Testament. Eine Deutung aus den Quellen des Judentums. ISBN 3-88411-034-9 ()
- Die langen Schatten des Krieges (Autobiografie, 1989, 3 Bände). ISBN 3-88411-035-7 ()
- Friedrich Weinreb in the German National Library catalogue
- (German) http://www.weinreb-stiftung.org/
- (German) http://www.arjeh.de/weinreb/
- (Dutch) Academie voor de Hebreeuwse Bijbel en de Hebreeuwse taal.
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