Jewish Responses to Persecution: 1933-1938 v. 1

Jewish Responses to Persecution: 1933-1938 v. 1 : 1933-1938

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Jewish Responses to Persecution, 1933-1946 offers a new perspective on Holocaust history by presenting documentation that describes the manifestations and meanings of Nazi Germany's "Final Solution" from the Jewish perspective. This first volume, taking us from Hitler's rise to power through the aftermath of Kristallnacht, vividly reveals the increasing devastation and confusion wrought in Jewish communities in and beyond Germany at the time. Numerous period photos, documents, and annotations make this unique series an invaluable research and teaching tool. Co-published with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 508 pages
  • 154.94 x 228.6 x 35.56mm | 929.86g
  • AltaMira Press,U.S.
  • California, United States
  • English
  • 1, black & white illustrations
  • 0759119082
  • 9780759119086
  • 1,341,530

Review quote

This is an exceptionally well researched volume... Any reader seeking a glimpse of the mindset of German Jewry in the years leading up to the Final Solution will find the rich array of documents and correspondence in this volume to be of great interest. The authors, both distinguished Holocaust scholars, have made a major contribution to the field with the release of this painstakingly researched work. The documents and correspondence are assembled in a well-organized manner beginning with the rise of Nazism and ending with Kristallnacht and its consequences. The authors provide valuable context and explanation before and after the document entries. Each reader will bring their own specific interest to this reference work and use a given document or series of documents in support of a particular perspective on the evolution of the Shoah... Jewish Responses to Persecution provides powerful examples of denial and rationalization as defenses in the face of overt hatred, acts of violence and recurrent threats of genocide in the years 1933 to 1938... This book is laudable as a scholarly addition to the documentary history of the Holocaust as well as an unintended and tragic reminder of the mortal dangers that stem from a disbelieving, defenseless, and unarmed Jewish population facing genocidal anti-Semitism. Jewish Book World In this first volume of a series documenting the Jewish responses to Nazism and the Holocaust, Matthaus and Roseman follow the major trends in Holocaust historiography in their chapter organization, covering everything from the rise of Nazism to survival strategies, immigration, and everyday life through the aftermath of Kristallnacht. Each chapter starts with background information; then each document is framed, in Talmudic style, by the editor's contextual information and commentary. Since many previous documentary collections focus on material generated by the Nazis, the Jews have often appeared as passive figures who went to their doom without apparent resistance. Recent research, however, has revealed that Nazi ideology was often implemented in a haphazard and contradictory manner, and this volume demonstrates how this affected the Jewish response. Verdict: These documents restore human agency to German Jews and reveal the multifaceted reactions to Nazism. The focus on contemporaneous sources avoids the trap common in much of the memoir literature that assumes Jews knew the end result of Nazi terror. Library Journal In this first volume in a series, Matthaus and Roseman collect 200 documents that illustrate Jewish life in Germany under Nazi persecution prior to WWII. Following an introductory essay on Jews in Germany before 1933, the volume is organized into four chronological sections (e.g., 'Subjects under Siege: September 1935 to December 1937'), each of which has three chapters (e.g., 'Jewish Questions after Nuremberg'). Each section begins with a historical overview, and each chapter features a contextual overview. The documents (all translated into English) come from both published and unpublished sources and include excerpts from diaries, letters, government reports and contemporary newspaper articles and some photographs. Context and/or explanation is provided for each document, many of which pertain to ordinary people. A touching example comes from a 1935 Bar Mitzvah note from Max Rosenthal to his grandson Hans, in which Rosenthal wrote, 'Memories are the only paradise from which we cannot be expelled.' Other features include a list of abbreviations, bibliography, glossary, and chronology (1933-early 1939). Recommended. CHOICE This is a highly accessible collection of primary-source materials, unique in that the documents emanate from the German-Jewish victims themselves and are presented within the historical context of the development of Nazi Jewish policy after 1933. Given the nature and quantity of the individual and institutional documents that the authors have assembled, this volume will provide scholars with invaluable materials for research projects on the Jewish victims of Nazi persecution. But its main value, and that of the four volumes that will follow, will be as a teaching resource especially for undergraduate and graduate seminars in Jewish history and the history of the Holocaust... The authors are to be congratulated for their document, and for their expert contextualization and annotation of the documents. Holocaust and Genocide Studies This impressive series provides a sense of the depth and diversity of contemporary Jewish documents while embedding them in explanatory narratives...[T]he first volume in the series provides an excellent grasp of the crucial dilemmas and some of the intriguing nuances of contemporary Jewish perspectives in Hitler's Germany. Yad Vashem Studies I have read Jewish Responses to Persecution Volume 1 from cover to cover, and I think it is a magnificent achievement. The selection of documents is astonishing in terms of the breadth and particular insight they offer. But the authors have also managed to select several times from the same sources, giving the reader a growing sense of familiarity-and empathy-with the authors. Combined with the wonderfully clear introductory pieces and linking commentary, this gives the volume the feel of an integrated history and even the quality of a novel. The reader begins to care about the witnesses and wonder what will happen to them next. It is truly a masterpiece. -- David Cesarani, Royal Holloway College, University of London; author of Becoming Eichmann One of the great challenges facing historians of any event or epoch is to recover the perceptions and uncertainties of people for whom what we know as the past was still an unknown and open-ended future. The singular achievement of this volume edited by Jurgen Matthaus and Mark Roseman is to place in the hands of historians, students, and general readers an extraordinary collection of documents that opens up the world of the 1930s as German Jews experienced it in all its urgency, confusion, disorientation, hope, and despair, not as we now make sense of it with the advantage of hindsight. -- Christopher R. Browning, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; author of Origins of the Final Solution For many years, the bulk of the research that has been done on the Holocaust focused on the actions of the perpetrators: what did they do and how did they do it? In recent years scholars have begun to redress this imbalance. Now their efforts will have a critically important resource on which to draw: the five volume series Jewish Responses to Persecution, 1933-1946. Drawing on diaries, letters, organizational archives, and a host of other sources it gives the victims a voice that, in too many other works, has been denied to them. While this first volume stands on its own as a book well worth reading, it also promises to become an invaluable aid to scholars, teachers, students, and all others who want to know more about 'the six million.' It is long overdue. -- Deborah E. Lipstadt, Emory University; author of Denying the Holocaustshow more

About Jürgen Matthäus

Jurgen Matthaus is research director at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Mark Roseman is professor in the Department of History and Pat M. Glazier Chair of the Jewish Studies Program at Indiana University Bloomington.show more

Table of contents

Volume Introduction: Jews and Other Germans before and after 1933 Part I: The Battles of 1933 Chapter 1: Confronting the Nazi Revolution Chapter 2: Exclusion and Introspection Chapter 3: Strategies for Survival Part II: Feeling One's Way: January 1934 to August 1935 Chapter 4: Stretching the Limits of Influence Chapter 5: Everyday Life in an Era of Uncertainty Chapter 6: Segregation and Exclusion: Spring and Summer 1935 Part III: Subjects Under Siege: September 1935 to December 1937 Chapter 7: The Nuremberg Laws and Their Impact Chapter 8: Bonds and Breaks with Germany Chapter 9: Jewish Questions after Nuremberg Part IV: Dispossession and Disappearance: 1938 Chapter 10: "Model Austria" and Its Ramifications Chapter 11: Evian and the Emigration Impasse Chapter 12: "Kristallnacht" and Its Consequences List of Documents Bibliography Glossary Chronologyshow more

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