Remembering the Holocaust

Remembering the Holocaust : A Debate

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Remembering the Holocaust explains why the Holocaust has come to be considered the central event of the 20th century, and what this means. Presenting Jeffrey Alexander's controversial essay that, in the words of Geoffrey Hartman, has already become a classic in the Holocaust literature, and following up with challenging and equally provocative responses to it, this book offers a sweeping historical reconstruction of the Jewish mass murder as it evolved in the popular imagination of Western peoples, as well as an examination of its consequences. Alexander's inquiry points to a broad cultural transition that took place in Western societies after World War II: from confidence in moving past the most terrible of Nazi wartime atrocities to pessimism about the possibility for overcoming violence, ethnic conflict, and war. The Holocaust has become the central tragedy of modern times, an event which can no longer be overcome, but one that offers possibilities to extend its moral lessons beyond Jews to victims of other types of secular and religious strife. Following Alexander's controversial thesis is a series of responses by distinguished scholars in the humanities and social sciences-Martin Jay, Bernhard Giesen, Michael Rothberg, Robert Manne, Nathan Glazer, and Elihu & Ruth Katz-considering the implications of the universal moral relevance of the Holocaust. A final response from Alexander in a postscript focusing on the repercussions of the Holocaust in Israel concludes this forthright and engaging discussion. Remembering the Holocaust is an all-too-rare debate on our conception of the Holocaust, how it has evolved over the years, and the profound effects it will have on the way we envision the future.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 224 pages
  • 162.56 x 236.22 x 25.4mm | 498.95g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195326229
  • 9780195326222
  • 1,084,094

Review quote

This volume brings together a classical and controversial essay on the Holocaust by the sociologist Jeffrey Alexander with a spectrum of new commentaries by distinguished scholars in the humanities and social sciences...The Holocaust remains the generalized symbol of evil, but it is clear from these essays, Alexander's rejoinder, and ongoing global secular and religious strife that its moral lessons have not been universally absorbed. * Journal of the American Academy of Religion *show more

About Jeffrey C. Alexander

Jeffrey C. Alexander is the Lillian Chavenson Saden Professor of Sociology and Co-Director, Center for Cultural Sociology at Yale University. Contributors Martin Jay is the Sidney Hellman Ehrman Professor of History at the University of California, Berkeley. Robert Manne is Professor of Politics at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. Michael Rothberg is Associate Professor of English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Elihu Katz is Trustee Professor at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania, Emeritus Professor of Sociology and Communication at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Scientific Director of the Guttman Institute of Applied Social Research. Ruth Katz is the Emanuel Alexander Professor Emerita of Musicology at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem. Bernhard Giesen is Professor of Sociology and Chair of the Department of Macrosociology at Universitat Konstanz (Germany). Nathan Glazer is Professor of Education Emeritus at Harvard Universityshow more

Table of contents

PART I; PART II; PART IIIshow more

Review Text

This volume brings together a classical and controversial essay on the Holocaust by the sociologist Jeffrey Alexander with a spectrum of new commentaries by distinguished scholars in the humanities and social sciences...The Holocaust remains the generalized symbol of evil, but it is clear from these essays, Alexander's rejoinder, and ongoing global secular and religious strife that its moral lessons have not been universally absorbed. Journal of the American Academy of Religionshow more

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