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Schedule of Events for 2013-14
CANCELLED ON ACCOUNT OF WEATHER -- WILL BE RE-SCHEDULED!
The German Resistance to Hitler
and the Persecution of the Jews
Peter Hoffmann, McGill Univeristy
German Resistance leaders were motivated, in varying degrees of intensity, by all that was wrong with the regime and with the war, the general brutality, contempt for the rule of law, arbitrary arrests, secret courts, abolition of civil liberties, murder of political dissidents, mistreatment of civilians in occupied territories, and mass starvation of Soviet-Russian prisoners of war. Resistance leaders saw the persecution of the Jews as a crime of a different order. A significant number of the anti-Hitler conspirators are on record as having stated, when interrogated by the Gestapo before their execution, that their ultimate motive, from the beginning of the war in 1939, was the violent persecution and mass murder of the European Jews. An important example of this was Carl Goerdeler, before 1936 the mayor of Leipzig and a cabinet-level official, who engaged in active opposition against the persecution of the Jews from 1933 on. He was hanged for “treason” on 2 February 1945.
Peter Hoffmann is William Kingsford Professor of History at McGill University, Montreal. He is the recipient of the Distinguished Service Medal of the State of Baden-Württemberg (Germany), the Officer´s Cross of the Order of Merit (Germany), and the Konrad Adenauer Research Award. He is the author of books on the German Resistance including The History of the German Resistance 1933–1945 (1977); Hitler´s Personal Security (1979); German Resistance to Hitler (1988); Stauffenberg. A Family History, 1905-1944 (1995); Carl Goerdeler and the Jewish Question, 1933-1942 (2011); Behind Valkyrie. German Resistance to Hitler. Documents (2011); and Carl Goerdeler gegen die Verfolgung der Juden (2013).
Recent Trends in Holocaust Research in Italy
Franklin H. Adler, Macalester College
What had happened to Italian Jews during the final phase of Fascism and during the German occupation of Northern Italy was not a subject faced by Italians once the Second World War ended and a new republic established by a coalition of parties that had participated in the anti-fascist resistance. Jews were melded into a larger group of “victims of fascism,” as if they had been targeted for discrimination and persecution primarily because they were “anti-fascists” rather than “Jews.” So far as the Shoah was concerned, an auto-exculpatory myth of the “good Italian” was created, counterposed to the pervasive image of the “bad German,” Italians, that is, who did whatever they could to protect and save their Jewish compatriots from roundups and deportation by the Germans to Auschwitz and other camps. The anti-Semitic policies of the Fascist regime, from 1938 to 1943, and later collaboration with the German occupying authorities, were rarely treated, even during the 1970s when a new, critical literature on Fascism emerged. It was only during the late 1980s, in the wake of the fiftieth anniversary of the 1938 racial laws, that a new wave of research began to focus seriously on the racial policy of the Fascist regime (its origins, the role of intellectuals, the public response) and on the active collaboration of Italians in the arrest of Jews, the appropriation of their property, and their deportation to death camps.
Franklin H. Adler is the G. Theodore Mitau Professor of Political Science at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. He specializes in Political Theory and Comparative Politics. He has published extensively on Western Marxism, Critical Theory and Hermeneutics, European movements of the extreme right, especially Italian Fascism and the contemporary far right in France. His first book on Italian Fascism focused on the complex relationship between industrialists and the regime (Italian Industrialists from Liberalism to Fascism, Cambridge University Press). He is currently writing a book on Italian Jews and Fascism, a topic on which he has published a number of critical essays that have appeared in the United States, Great Britain, Italy and France. A long-term editor of the journal Telos, his work has appeared in such other journals as Les temps modernes, Raisons Politiques, Il Ponte, Patterns of Prejudice, Modern Judaism, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Comparative Political Studies, and Perspectives on Politics. He also contributed to the four-volume Routledge anthology Antonio Gramsci: Critical Assessments, and to the two-volume Einaudi anthology Il Fascismo: Un dizionario Critico.
On the Peripheries of the Holocaust:
Killings and Pillage of Jews by their Neighbors
in Occupied Poland
Jan T. Gross, Princeton University
Drawing upon research from his latest book, Professor Gross will examine in this lecture whether pillage, occasional murder, or denunciation of Jews hiding in the Polish countryside during the Holocaust were accepted social practices, or were acts carried out by criminal elements in the Polish population that met with social censure.
Jan Tomasz Gross is Norman B. Tomlinson '16 and '48 Professor of War and Society at Princeton University, where he has been in the History Department since 2003 after teaching at New York University, Yale University, Emory University, and universities in France, Austria, and Poland. An internationally-recognized authority on the German and Soviet occupations of Poland and the Holocaust in the Polish lands, Professor Gross is author of, among other works, Polish Society under German Occupation: the Generalgouvernement, 1939-1945 (Princeton, 1979), Revolution from Abroad: Soviet Conquest of Poland's Western Ukraine and Western Belorussia (Princeton, 1988), Neighbors: the Destruction of the Jewish Community in Jedwabne, Poland (Princeton, 2001), Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland after Auschwitz. An Essay in Historical Interpretation (New York, 2006), and most recently Golden Harvest: Reflections about Events at the Periphery of the Holocaust (Oxford, 2012), co-authored with Irena Grudzinska-Gross. The publication of these last three works has put Professor Gross at the center of a transformative reassessment of the historiography on wartime and postwar Jewish-Polish relations, and has aroused lively public debate in Poland and beyond
Underwritten by the Ader/Konigsberg Endowment for Holocaust Studies at UVM
Yom Hashoah Lecture
Religion, Race and Emotion:
The Aryan Jesus in Nazi Germany
Susannah Heschel, Dartmouth College
For those Christians who embraced National Socialism, the figure of Jesus posed a particularly difficult problem: How could a Nazi worship a Jewish god? For some, the conflict led to a rejection of Christianity and a revival of medieval Teutonic myths and symbols. For others, the answer lay in a redefinition of Jesus as an Aryan whose goal was the destruction of Judaism. During the Third Reich, a group of German Protestant theologians, motivated by racism and tapping into traditional Christian anti-Semitism, redefined Jesus as an Aryan whose goal was the destruction of Judaism, and Nazism as fulfilling his mission. In 1939, these theologians established the “Institute for the Study and Eradication of Jewish Influence on German Religious Life,” financed by the Protestant church, that produced a dejudaized, nazified Christian Bible, hymnal, and theology. A center of passionate, pseudo-scholarship in the field of theology, this Institute was a powerhouse of antisemitic propaganda during World War II, and its members continued to hold flourishing careers in East and West Germany after the war.
Susannah Heschel is the Eli Black Professor of Jewish Studies at Dartmouth College. Her scholarship focuses on Jewish-Christian relations in Germany during the 19th and 20th centuries, the history of biblical scholarship, and the history of anti-Semitism. Her numerous publications include Abraham Geiger and the Jewish Jesus (University of Chicago Press), which won a National Jewish Book Award and Germany's Geiger Prize, and The Aryan Jesus: Christian Theologians and the Bible in Nazi Germany (Princeton University Press). She is the author of over seventy articles and has edited several books, including Moral Grandeur and Spiritual Audacity: Essays of Abraham Joshua Heschel; Betrayal: German Churches and the Holocaust (with Robert P. Ericksen); Insider/Outsider: American Jews and Multiculturalism (with David Biale and Michael Galchinsky). The recipient of many grants and awards, she has been a Rockefeller fellow at the National Humanities Center, and two years ago received an honorary doctorate in Humane Letters from Colorado College; in 2008 she received an honorary doctorate from the Augustana Theologische Hochschule, a Protestant seminary in Bavaria, Germany. In November 2009, she received an honorary doctorate of sacred letters from the University of St. Michael's College, the graduate faculty in Catholic theology of the University of Toronto, and in May 2010 she received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut, where she also delivered the Baccalaureate address. Between 1999 and 2008 she served on the Academic Advisory Committee of the Research Center of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and on its subcommittee on archival materials and publications.
Underwritten by the Henry and Lili Altschuler Endowment
Last modified March 12 2014 02:45 PM