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Histories of the Holocaust

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Overview

The Holocaust is one of the most intensively studied phenomena in modern history. The volume of writing that fuels the numerous debates about it is overwhelming in quantity and diversity. Even those who have dedicated their professional lives to understanding the Holocaust cannot assimilate it all.

There is, then, an urgent need to synthesize and evaluate the complex historiography on the Holocaust, exploring the major themes and debates relating to it and drawing widely on the findings of a great deal of research. Concentrating on the work of the last two decades, Histories of the Holocaust examines the 'Final Solution' as a European project, the decision-making process, perpetrator research, plunder and collaboration, regional studies, ghettos, camps, race science, antisemitic ideology, and recent debates concerning modernity, organization theory, colonialism, genocide studies, and cultural history. Research on victims is discussed, but Stone focuses more closely on perpetrators, reflecting trends within the historiography, as well as his own view that in order to understand Nazi genocide the emphasis must be on the culture of the perpetrators.

The book is not a 'history of the history of the Holocaust', offering simply a description of developments in historiography. Stone critically analyses the literature, discerning major themes and trends and assessing the achievements and shortcomings of the various approaches. He demonstrates that there never can or should be a single history of the Holocaust and facilitates an understanding of the genocide of the Jews from a multiplicity of angles. An understanding of how the Holocaust could have happened can only be achieved by recourse to histories of the Holocaust: detailed day-by-day accounts of high-level decision-making; long-term narratives of the Holocaust's relationship to European histories of colonialism and warfare; micro-historical studies of Jewish life before, during, and after Nazi occupation; and cultural analyses of Nazi fantasies and fears.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199566808
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 8/13/2010
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Dan Stone is Professor of Modern History at Royal Holloway, University of London. As well as some fifty scholarly articles, he is the author or editor of ten books, including: Breeding Superman: Nietzsche, Race and Eugenics in Edwardian and Interwar Britain (2002); Constructing the Holocaust: A Study in Historiography (2003); Responses to Nazism in Britain, 1933-1939: Before War and Holocaust (2003); The Historiography of the Holocaust (ed., 2004); History, Memory and Mass Atrocity: Essays on the Holocaust and Genocide (2006); The Historiography of Genocide (ed., 2008); and the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Postwar European History.

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Table of Contents

Abbreviations

Introduction: Towards an Integrated Historiography of the Holocaust 1

1 The 'Final Solution': A German or European Project? 13

2 The Decision-Making Process in Context 64

3 The Holocaust: Child of Modernity? 113

4 Race Science: The Basis of the Nazi World View? 160

5 Genocide, the Holocaust, and the History of Colonialism 203

6 The Holocaust as an Expression of Nazi Culture 245

Conclusion: Into the Abyss 284

Further Reading 289

Index 301

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