Understanding the Nazi Genocide

Understanding the Nazi Genocide : Marxism After Auschwitz

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'...this is a genuinely original contribution to our understanding. Students of the Holocaust sometimes worry that too much analysis may immunise us against its unbelievable horror. Traverso avoids that risk with great sensitivity and imagination.' Socialist Review

In Understanding the Nazi Genocide Enzo Traverso sustains a dialogue with writings on the Shoah from Hannah Arendt to Daniel Goldhagen by drawing on the critical and heretical Marxism of Walter Benjamin and the Frankfurt School, which grasped late capitalism's pent-up capacity for destructive upheavals exacerbated by bureaucratic organisation and advanced technology.

After Auschwitz, Hiroshima and the gulag, the old warning slogan - socialism or barbarism - formulated by European Marxists at the beginning of twentieth century needs to be seriously `revised'. The choice we face today is no longer between the progress of civilisation and a fall into ancient savagery, but between socialism conceived as a new civilisation and the destruction of humankind. For Traverso the Warsaw Ghetto uprising is an image of what should impel us to rebel: not a sense of inevitable victory, but an ethical imperative.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 160 pages
  • 137.2 x 215.9 x 17.8mm | 317.52g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0745313582
  • 9780745313580

Table of contents

Foreword



Introduction



1. Auschwitz, Marx and the twentieth century



2. The blindness of the intellectuals: historicising Sartre's Anti-Semite and Jew



3. On the edge of understanding: from the Frankfurt School to Ernest Mandel



4. The uniqueness of Auschwitz: hypotheses, problems and wrong turns in historical research



5. The debt: the Warsaw Ghetto uprising



6. The Shoah, historians and the public use of history: on the Goldhagen affair



Conclusion



Bibliography



Index
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Review quote

'...this is a genuinely original contribution to our understanding. Students of the Holocaust sometimes worry that too much analysis may immunise us against its unbelievable horror. Traverso avoids that risk with great sensitivity and imagination.' --Socialist Review
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About Enzo Traverso

Enzo Traverso is Susan and Barton Winokur Professor in the Humanities at Cornell University. His publications include more than ten authored and edited books, including The End of Jewish Modernity (Pluto, 2016), Fire and Blood, The European Civil War 1914-1945 (Verso, 2016) and Understanding the Nazi Genocide: Marxism after Auschwitz (Pluto Press, 1999).
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14 ratings
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