War and Genocide: A Concise History of the Holocaust (Critical Issues in World and International History)

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9781442242289: War and Genocide: A Concise History of the Holocaust (Critical Issues in World and International History)

In examining one of the defining events of the twentieth century, Doris L. Bergen situates the Holocaust in its historical, political, social, cultural, and military contexts. Unlike many other treatments of the Holocaust, this revised, third edition discusses not only the persecution of the Jews, but also other segments of society victimized by the Nazis: Roma, homosexuals, Poles, Soviet POWs, the disabled, and other groups deemed undesirable. In clear and eloquent prose, Bergen explores the two interconnected goals that drove the Nazi German program of conquest and genocide—purification of the so-called Aryan race and expansion of its living space—and discusses how these goals affected the course of World War II. Including firsthand accounts from perpetrators, victims, and eyewitnesses, her book is immediate, human, and eminently readable.

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About the Author:

Doris L. Bergen is Chancellor Rose and Ray Wolfe Professor of Holocaust Studies at the University of Toronto.

Review:

Doris Bergen's War and Genocide is a jewel of a book that addresses students, specialists, and the general public alike. Her clear analysis of the development of the genocide is combined with an extraordinary and broad view of the actions and experiences of those involved. She not only covers the history of Nazi perpetrators and their policies but also pays careful attention to the experience of Jewish victims as well as the varied social groups targeted for persecution including women, homosexual men, Roma, the disabled and others. In addition, her nuanced attention to visual and cultural sources further models how a critical history of the Holocaust can be written. (Paul B. Jaskot, DePaul University)

The revisions undertaken by Doris Bergen for this new edition of War and Genocide make an excellent book even better. Instructors and students will appreciate the expanded coverage of crucial questions such as collaboration, developments in the Soviet Union, the fate of Roma under Nazi rule, and post-1945 ramifications of the Holocaust, all of which have been subjects of much recent research. Up-to-date and comprehensive, War and Genocide remains the ideal introduction to an enormously complex and challenging subject. (Alan E. Steinweis, University of Vermont)

War and Genocide provides a concise, careful, and engaging discussion of the Holocaust. Written by a master teacher—a scholar who understands undergraduate readers—it anticipates questions and challenges students to think critically through common misconceptions about the past. War and Genocide is the most valuable resource that I have for conveying the complexity and nuance of the Holocaust. (Tatjana Lichtenstein, The University of Texas at Austin)

Balanced and comprehensive, this third edition of Doris Bergen's masterly book accomplishes several tasks that few other works on the Holocaust can claim to have achieved: it is meticulously researched, entirely up to date, and highly readable. It sets the Holocaust within a wide framework of origins and wartime events without losing sight of its particular horror and distinct features, and it understands the Holocaust as an assault on humanity that encompassed not only Jews but whole other categories of human beings, not least the handicapped, the Roma, and Soviet prisoners of war. War and Genocide is certain to become essential reading for all students of the last century's darkest era. (Omer Bartov, Brown University, author of Erased: Vanishing Traces of Jewish Galicia in Present-Day Ukraine)

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