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This book examines Jewish life in Vienna just after the Nazi-takeover in 1938. Who were Vienna’s Jews, how did they react and respond to Nazism, and why? Drawing upon the voices of the individuals and families who lived during this time, together with new archival documentation, Ilana Offenberger reconstructs the daily lives of Vienna’s Jews from Anschluss in March 1938 through the entire Nazi occupation and the eventual dissolution of the Jewish community of Vienna. Offenberger explains how and why over two-thirds of the Jewish community emigrated from the country, while one-third remained trapped. A vivid picture emerges of the co-dependent relationship this community developed with their German masters, and the false hope they maintained until the bitter end. The Germans murdered close to one third of Vienna’s Jewish population in the “final solution” and their family members who escaped the Reich before 1941 chose never to return; they remained dispersed across the world. This is not a triumphant history. Although the overwhelming majority survived the Holocaust, the Jewish community that once existed was destroyed.
The genocide of Jewish and non-Jewish civilians perpetrated by the German regime during World War Two continues to confront scholars with elusive questions even after nearly seventy years and hundreds of studies. This multi-contributory work is a landmark publication that sees experts renowned in their field addressing these questions in light of current research. A comprehensive introduction to the history of the Holocaust, this volume has 42 chapters which add important depth to the academic study of the Holocaust, both geographically and topically. The chapters address such diverse issues as: continuities in German and European history with respect to genocide prior to 1939 the eugenic roots of Nazi anti-Semitism the response of Europe's Jewish Communities to persecution and destruction the Final Solution as the German occupation instituted it across Europe rescue and rescuer motivations the problem of prosecuting war crimes gender and Holocaust experience the persecution of non-Jewish victims the Holocaust in postwar cultural venues. This important collection will be essential reading for all those interested in the history of the Holocaust.
Estonia is perhaps the only country in Europe that lacks a comprehensive history of its Jewish minority. Spanning over 150 years of Estonian Jewish history, On the Margins is a truly unique book. Rebuilding a life beyond so-called Pale of Jewish Settlement in the Russian Empire, the Jewish cultural autonomy in interwar Estonia, and the trauma of Soviet occupation of 1940?41 are among the issues addressed in the book but most profoundly, the book wrestles with the subject of the Holocaust and its legacy in Estonia. Specifically, it examines the quasi-legal system of murder instituted in Nazi-occupied Estonia, confiscation of Jewish property, and Jewish forced labor camps and develops an analysis of the causes of collaboration during the Holocaust. The book also explores the dynamics of war crimes trials in the Soviet Union since the 1960s and so-called denaturalization trials in the United States in the 1980s. The haunting memory of Soviet and Nazi rule, the book concludes, prevents a larger segment of today?s Estonian population from facing up to the Holocaust and the universal message that it carries.
More than half a century before the mass executions of the Holocaust, Germany devastated the peoples of southwestern Africa. While colonialism might seem marginal to German history, controversial new scholarship compares the acts of this period with Nazi practices on the Eastern and Western fronts. Examples of the most important research conducted on the "continuity thesis" over the past five years, the chapters in this anthology debate the connections between German colonialist activities and the behavior of Germany during World War II. Some argue that the country's domination of southwestern Africa gave rise to perceptions of racial difference and superiority at home, contributing to a nascent nationalism that blossomed into National Socialism and the Holocaust. Others remain skeptical, and both sides are well-represented. Contributors merge Germany's colonial past with debates over the country's identity and history and compare its colonial crimes with other European ventures. Issues discussed range from the denial or marginalization of German genocide to the place of colonialism and the Holocaust within Germany and Israel's postwar relations. Authors also compare the legacy of genocide in both Europe and Africa.
#1 New York Times Bestseller Edith Hahn was an outspoken young woman in Vienna when the Gestapo forced her into a ghetto and then into a slave labor camp. When she returned home months later, she knew she would become a hunted woman and went underground. With the help of a Christian friend, she emerged in Munich as Grete Denner. There she met Werner Vetter, a Nazi Party member who fell in love with her. Despite Edith's protests and even her eventual confession that she was Jewish, he married her and kept her identity a secret. In wrenching detail, Edith recalls a life of constant, almost paralyzing fear. She tells how German officials casually questioned the lineage of her parents; how during childbirth she refused all painkillers, afraid that in an altered state of mind she might reveal something of her past; and how, after her husband was captured by the Soviets, she was bombed out of her house and had to hide while drunken Russian soldiers raped women on the street. Despite the risk it posed to her life, Edith created a remarkable record of survival. She saved every document, as well as photographs she took inside labor camps. Now part of the permanent collection at the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., these hundreds of documents, several of which are included in this volume, form the fabric of a gripping new chapter in the history of the Holocaust—complex, troubling, and ultimately triumphant.

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