Communication and creativity as ways to bring about change.

BOOK: In My Grandfather's Shadow

The true story of three generations knotted together by events that took place in Nazi Germany: a grandfather who was a decorated general on the Eastern Front, her German-born mother and Angela herself.

In a rare confluence of memoir, psychology and historical detective story, Findlay's account of her unflinching quest for the truth about her grandfather breaks through the silence surrounding not only many of the Second World War's perpetrators but also its victims. In My Grandfather's Shadow explores the heritability of unresolved experiences. It questions deeply held perceptions of good and bad and uncovers the lesser-known history of the war's losers, their post-war culture of apology and atonement and the lingering legacy of shame – lessons that continue to be of huge relevance to humanity in the twenty-first century.




Book cover


‘Deeply moving, thought-provoking, brave, honest, articulate and truly enlightening....’

Based on her own research into her Anglo-German roots and Germany’s little-known process of coming to terms with its Nazi past, Angela describes the growing awareness of intergenerational trauma and the inheritability of unresolved emotions such as guilt or shame. Though such a journey into a dark past can be painful, she highlights the intensely healing nature of talking about difficult histories.




Oxford Literary Festival

Wednesday 29th March 2023, 2-3pm Oxford Literary Festival The Traumatic Inheritance of War – Miranda Gold and Angela Findlay Info & Tickets here

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Summertown Library, Oxford

Thursday 23rd March 2023, 6pm Summertown Library, Oxford, OX2 7JN Talk: In My Grandfather’s Shadow by Angela Findlay Info & Tickets here

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Stroud Film Festival, Lansdown Hall, Stroud

Sunday 12th March, 2023, 7.30pm ERIC RAVILIOUS – DRAWN TO WAR (Plus discussion and Q&A with Angela Findlay and Andy Lovell.) Info & Tickets here

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Guest speaker at ARVON Residential Life Writing Week: Turning pain into prose

Wednesday 1st March, 2023 Guest speaker at ARVON Residential Life Writing Week: Turning pain into prose Tutors: Marina Cantacuzino and Rachel Kelly  

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First Thursday – In Conversation

Thursday 2nd February 2023, 7pm The Painswick Centre, Painswick, Glos. Angela Findlay in conversation with Madeleine Bunting about her powerful memoir, In My Grandfather’s Shadow, that explores, family history and intergenerational trauma. Info & Tickets here

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Dan Snow’s History Hit: ‘My Grandfather, the Wehrmacht General in Russia’

Angela Findlay was determined to find out if her grandfather, Karl von Graffen, was a Nazi and what he did on the Eastern front. An artist and speaker, Angela spent her youth feeling a constant sense of guilt and shame but couldn’t figure out why. It wasn’t until her 40s that she turned to her…

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BBC Radio West Chris Baxter series

BBC Radio West – Monday 21st – Friday 25th November 2022 In Conversation with Chris Baxter

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Angela Findlay in Cotswold Life – November 2022

Angela Findlay tells Katie Jarvis of the immense struggle she has had to come to terms with her German roots, brilliantly documented in her book, In My Grandfather’s Shadow. Read the article here

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Speaking the Unspeakable – Watch 4 online Conversations on Shame

We are excited to present to you Speaking the Unspeakable, a series of online conversations exploring shame and the profound impact it has on how we understand ourselves and our lives. In these unique recordings, four of our storytellers share how shame can disconnect and silence us – and also reveal the insights they have…

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Stroud Book Festival

More information here: 

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Mere Literary Festival

Angela Findlay is an Anglo-German artist and public speaker who has spent much of her career teaching art in prisons. Her time ‘behind bars’ in Germany and later as Arts Co-ordinator for the London-based Koestler Arts charity informed her research into the intergenerational consequences of unresolved trauma, guilt and shame. More information 

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Ebenezer Presents @The Seed Factory

Friday October 7th Doors Open at 7:00 pm for a 7:30 pm start – £15 for seat at Seed Factory – Includes glass of wine and small eats! £5 for a Zoom Ticket! Growing up in England, Angela felt an overbearing sense of guilt and her own ‘badness’. When she eventually makes the connection to…

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Cuckfield Book Festival

I will be in conversation with Julia Boyd, the best-selling author of Travellers in the Third Reich and A village in the Third Reich. More information and tickets here.

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Online Training: Developing a Shame-Informed Approach

This online training took place on 26th September 2022 and explored how to develop a Shame Informed approach when working with groups or individuals. Shame can often be at the root of disruptive behaviours and by understanding how to recognise and safely work with shame it is possible to transform how you support the groups…

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The Chelsea History Festival at the National Army Museum, London

Join Angela Findlay as she discusses the process of coming to terms with her grandfather’s wartime service in the German Arym and the heritabilty of guilt. Buy Tickets

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Latest contributor to The Forgiveness Project’s collection of stories

Very honoured to be the latest contributor to The Forgiveness Project’s collection of stories by people who have explored the possibility of forgiveness in the face of extreme experiences and pain. View Angela’s story here  

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Radio interviews: In My Grandfather’s Shadow

Please click to view a collection of Radio interviews relating to Publication Day of In My Grandfather’s Shadow – July 2022

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Good on Paper – June 2022

Mandy Robotham talks to Stroud artist and public speaker turned writer, Angela Findlay, on the difficulties of her family’s complex past.

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The British Association for Holocaust Studies Annual Conference 2022

18th-20th July at the University of Winchester and online. Angela will be presenting a paper online – Talking about painful pasts to heal the present – on Wednesday 20th July, 3-4.30pm. More information and bookings here:

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The audio version of ‘In My Grandfather’s Shadow’

What an amazing week spent at Penguin Random House recording the audio version of my book. Felt very special to read every single word I wrote to an audience as yet unknown. You can pre-order here

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