Facing the Nazi Past examines how the communist East viewed the events of these years very differently from West Germany during the Cold War. Following the unification of Germany, these contrasting memories of the Third Reich have contributed to a new perspective on this period of German history. Facing the Nazi Past explores the developments and debates that were symptomatic of this shift towards a more open confrontation with the past, such as: * the image of resistance to Hitler in united Germany * changes at concentration camp memorial sites since 1990 * the commemoration of 8 May 1945 in 1995 * how the revelations in Goldhagen's startling book Hitler's Willing Executioners triggered new discussion * the plans for the construction of a Holocaust Memorial. Anyone; students, scholars or interested readers, who are involved in the study of European history, will find this an enthralling and informative read.
This book analyzes how West German intellectuals debated the Nazi past and democratic future of their country. Rather than proceeding event by event, it highlights the underlying issues at stake: the question of a stigmatized nation and the polarized reactions to it that structured German discussion and memory of the Nazi past. Paying close attention to the generation of German intellectuals born during the Weimar Republic - the forty-fivers - this book traces the drama of sixty years of bitter public struggle about the meaning of the past: did the Holocaust forever stain German identity so that Germans could never again enjoy their national emotions like other nationalities? Or were Germans unfairly singled out for the crimes of their ancestors? By explaining how the perceived pollution of family and national life affected German intellectuals, the book shows that public debates cannot be isolated from the political emotions of the intelligentsia.
No documentation of National Socialism can be undertaken without the explicit recognition that the "German Renaissance" promised by the Nazis culminated in unprecedented horror—World War II and the genocide of European Jewry. With The Third Reich Sourcebook, editors Anson Rabinbach and Sander L. Gilman present a comprehensive collection of newly translated documents drawn from wide-ranging primary sources, documenting both the official and unofficial cultures of National Socialist Germany from its inception to its defeat and collapse in 1945. Framed with introductions and annotations by the editors, the documents presented here include official government and party pronouncements, texts produced within Nazi structures, such as the official Jewish Cultural League, as well as documents detailing the impact of the horrors of National Socialism on those who fell prey to the regime, especially Jews and the handicapped. With thirty chapters on ideology, politics, law, society, cultural policy, the fine arts, high and popular culture, science and medicine, sexuality, education, and other topics, The Third Reich Sourcebook is the ultimate collection of primary sources on Nazi Germany.
Remembering the Eastern Front in Germany since 1945
Author: Christina Morina
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Christina Morina's book examines the history of the Eastern Front war and its impact on German politics and society throughout the postwar period. She argues that the memory of the Eastern Front war was one of the most crucial and contested themes in each part of the divided Germany. Although the Holocaust gained the most prominent position in West German memory, official memory in East Germany centered on the war against the USSR. The book analyzes the ways in which these memories emerged in postwar German political culture during and after the Cold War, and how views of these events played a role in contemporary political debates. The analysis pays close attention to the biographies of the protagonists both during the war and after, drawing distinctions between the accepted, public memory of events and individual encounters with the war.
The history of National Socialism as movement and regime remains one of the most compelling and intensively studied aspects of twentieth-century history, and one whose significance extends far beyond Germany or even Europe alone. This volume presents an up-to-date and authoritative introduction to the history of Nazi Germany, with ten chapters on the most important themes, each by an expert in the field. Following an introduction which sets out the challenges this period of history has posed to historians since 1945, contributors explain how Nazism emerged as ideology and political movement; how Hitler and his party took power and remade the German state; and how the Nazi 'national community' was organized around a radical and eventually lethal distinction between the 'included' and the 'excluded'. Further chapters discuss the complex relationship between Nazism and Germany's religious faiths; the perverse economic rationality of the regime; the path to war laid down by Hitler's foreign policy; and the intricate and intimate intertwining of war and genocide, with a final chapter on the aftermath of National Socialism in postwar German history and memory.
The Reception of the Holocaust in Postcommunist Europe
Author: John-Paul Himka
Publisher: U of Nebraska Press
Despite the Holocaust’s profound impact on the history of Eastern Europe, the communist regimes successfully repressed public discourse about and memory of this tragedy. Since the collapse of communism in 1989, however, this has changed. Not only has a wealth of archival sources become available, but there have also been oral history projects and interviews recording the testimonies of eyewitnesses who experienced the Holocaust as children and young adults. Recent political, social, and cultural developments have facilitated a more nuanced and complex understanding of the continuities and discontinuities in representations of the Holocaust. People are beginning to realize the significant role that memory of Holocaust plays in contemporary discussions of national identity in Eastern Europe. This volume of original essays explores the memory of the Holocaust and the Jewish past in postcommunist Eastern Europe. Devoting space to every postcommunist country, the essays in Bringing the Dark Past to Light explore how the memory of the “dark pasts” of Eastern European nations is being recollected and reworked. In addition, it examines how this memory shapes the collective identities and the social identity of ethnic and national minorities. Memory of the Holocaust has practical implications regarding the current development of national cultures and international relationships.
Bombing Civilians examines a crucial question: why did military planning in the early twentieth century shift its focus from bombing military targets to bombing civilians? From the British bombing of Iraq in the early 1920s to the most recent policies in Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Lebanon, Bombing Civilians analyzes in detail the history of indiscriminate bombing, examining the fundamental questions of how this theory justifying mass killing originated and why it was employed as a compelling military strategy for decades, both before and since the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.