America and the Return of Nazi Contraband: The Recovery of Europe's Cultural Treasures / Edition 1

America and the Return of Nazi Contraband: The Recovery of Europe's Cultural Treasures / Edition 1

by Michael J. Kurtz
     
 

ISBN-10: 0521133408

ISBN-13: 9780521133401

Pub. Date: 08/31/2009

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

The Nazi war on European culture produced the greatest dislocation of art, archives, and libraries in the history of the world. In the ruins of the Reich, Allied occupiers found millions of paintings, sculptures, books, and manuscripts, from the mediocre to the priceless, hidden in thousands of secret hideaways. This book tells the story of how the American military…  See more details below

Overview

The Nazi war on European culture produced the greatest dislocation of art, archives, and libraries in the history of the world. In the ruins of the Reich, Allied occupiers found millions of paintings, sculptures, books, and manuscripts, from the mediocre to the priceless, hidden in thousands of secret hideaways. This book tells the story of how the American military government in Germany, spearheaded by a few dozen dedicated Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives officers and enlisted men, coped with resorting Europe's cultural heritage. Caught up in often bitter diplomatic wrangling during and after the war, the American restitution effort struggled to uncover what the Nazis had hidden and to equitably return all that was found. Based on the pioneering study of cultural restitution first published in 1985, America and the Return of Nazi Contraband presents new insights into how the American government and Jewish organizations managed the painfully difficult problem of heirless Jewish cultural property.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521133401
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
08/31/2009
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.20(d)

Table of Contents

1Plunder and restitution : an historical overview3
2Nazi looting : the war against European culture, 1933-194512
3Preservers and restorers : response to crisis43
4Wartime frustrations : great power diplomacy and cultural restitution57
5Restitution imbroglio : the American dilemma in the first six months of occupation81
6The Allies agree on restitution106
7Cultural restitution in the American zone, 1946-1949125
8A special concern : the Jewish inheritance151
9Conflict and cooperation : the politics of restitution in the Cold War177
10Restitution at home : the American scene201
11Renewed ferment : restitution in the post-Cold War era210
12Looking ahead232
AppWashington conference principles on Nazi-confiscated art

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