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The Holocaust: A German Historian Examines the Genocideby Wolfgang Benz
Synopses & Reviews
Germany's leading Holocaust scholar has crafted a concise, well-written, and powerful introduction to the subject, concluding with a discussion of what the Germans knew about the genocide.
The history of the Holocaust keeps being written and rewritten in ever greater detail, but almost always by Jews. Wolgang Benz's book makes an important contribution by bringing the German perspective to this horrific event. A masterpiece of compression, the books covers all the major topics and issues, from the Wannsee Conference of January 20, 1942, to stripping Jews of their civil rights, from the establishment of ghettos to the creation of killing centers and the development of an efficient system for extermination. The book also includes a chapter on The Other Genocide: The Persecution of the Sinti and Roma, detailing the crusade against the Gypsies.
From the Foreword by Arthur Hertzberg:
Benz's account is the necessary 'first course' for anyone who wants to know about the Holocaust and to think further about its meaning for humanity. It is of particular importance that the historian who has written this book is a German. This account is trustworthy because its author combines within himself the rare authority of someone who belongs to the past of his nation. He has both understood and transcended its history in this century. The subject of the book, the Holocaust, is somber beyond words, but this account in Benz's words is a cause for hope.
Table of Contents
Talks followed by breakfast : the Wannsee Conference of January 20, 1942 — German Jews and National Socialism : self-image and threat — Exclusion and discrimination of the Jews in Germany, 1933-1939 — Jewish emigration, 1933-1941 — Aryanization and the Jewish star : German Jews are totally stripped of their civil rights, 1939-1941 — Ghettos in occupied Eastern Europe : the beginning of the final solution of the Jewish question — From antisemitism to genocide : the genesis of the final solution — Massacre in the East : Einsatzgruppen and other killing units in the occupied territories, 1941-1942 — The deportation of the Jews from Germany — Theresienstadt — The other genocide : the persecution of the Sinti and Roma — Industrialized mass murder in the extermination camps, 1942-1944.
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