Roald Hoffmann was born in Poland in 1937. During the war he was hidden in a local schoolhouse, along with his mother, two uncles and an aunt, from age five to seven. Hoffmann’s mother kept him entertained by teaching him to read and having him memorize geography from textbooks stored in the attic, then quizzing him. He went on to become a theoretical chemist and won the 1981 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Hoffmann has also published plays and poetry and is the Frank H. T. Rhodes Professor of Humane Letters, Emeritus, at Cornell University, in Ithaca, New York.
The third in our series, raising awareness of United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Day, 27 January.
Hoffmann was photographed and interviewed by Shadows of Shoah when he visited New Zealand in 2013.