Second World War

The Holocaust Books

  • AQPNQ
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    On a sunny morning in May 1939 a phalanx of 800 women - housewives, doctors, opera singers, politicians, prostitutes - were marched through the woods fifty miles north of Berlin, driven on past a shining lake, then herded through giant gates. Whipping and kicking them were scores of German women guards. Their destination was Ravensbruck, a concentration camp designed specifically for women by Heinrich Himmler, prime architect of the Nazi genocide. For decades the story of Ravensbruck was hidden behind the Iron Curtain and today is still little known. Using testimony unearthed since the end of the Cold War, and interviews with survivors who have never spoken before, Helm has ventured into the heart of the camp, demonstrating for the reader in riveting detail how easily and quickly the unthinkable horror evolved.
  • ARIGH
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    This book is long listed for the 2015 Samuel Johnson Prize. We have come to see the Holocaust as a factory of death, organised by bureaucrats. Yet by the time the gas chambers became operation more than a million European Jews were already dead: shot at close range over pits and ravines. They had been murdered in the lawless killing zones created by the German colonial war in the East, many on the fertile black earth that the Nazis believed would feed the German people. It comforts us to believe that the Holocaust was a unique event. But as Timothy Snyder shows, we have missed basic lessons of the history of the Holocaust, and some of our beliefs are frighteningly close to the ecological panic that Hitler expressed in the 1920s. As ideological and environmental challenges to the world order mount, our societies might be more vulnerable than we would like to think. Timothy Snyder's Bloodlands was an acclaimed exploration of what happened in eastern Europe between 1933 and 1945, when Nazi and Soviet policy brought death to some 14 million people. Black Earth is a deep exploration of the ideas and politics that enabled the worst of these policies, the Nazi extermination of the Jews. Its pioneering treatment of this unprecedented crime makes the Holocaust intelligible, and thus all the more terrifying.
  • APMMK
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    Among millions of Holocaust victims sent to Auschwitz II-Birkenau in 1944, Priska, Rachel, and Anka each passed through its infamous gates with a secret. Strangers to each other, they were newly pregnant, and facing an uncertain fate without their husbands. Alone, scared, and with so many loved ones already lost to the Nazis, these young women were privately determined to hold on to all they had left: their lives, and those of their unborn babies. That the gas chambers ran out of Zyklon-B just after the babies were born, before they and their mothers could be exterminated, is just one of several miracles that allowed them all to survive and rebuild their lives after World War II. Born Survivors follows the mothers' incredible journey - first to Auschwitz, where they each came under the murderous scrutiny of Dr. Josef Mengele; then to a German slave labour camp where, half-starved and almost worked to death, they struggled to conceal their condition; and finally, as the Allies closed in, their hellish 17-day train journey with thousands of other prisoners to the Mauthausen death camp in Austria. Hundreds died along the way but the courage and kindness of strangers, including guards and civilians, helped save these women and their children. Sixty-five years later, the three 'miracle babies' met for the first time at Mauthausen for the anniversary of the liberation that ultimately saved them. United by their remarkable experiences of survival against all odds, they now consider each other "siblings of the heart." In Born Survivors, Wendy Holden brings all three stories together for the first time to mark their seventieth birthdays and the seventieth anniversary of the ending of the war. A heart-stopping account of how three mothers and their newborns fought to survive the Holocaust, Born Survivors is also a life-affirming celebration of our capacity to care and to love amid inconceivable cruelty.
  • AQXSB
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    An Honorary Citizen of the U.S.A., and designated as one of the Righteous among the Nations by Israel, Raoul Wallenberg's heroism in Budapest at the height of the Holocaust saved countless lives, and ultimately cost him his own. A series of unlikely coincidences led to the appointment of Wallenberg, by trade a poultry importer, as Sweden's Special Envoy to Budapest in 1944. With remarkable bravery, Wallenberg created a system of protective passports, and sheltered thousands of desperate Jews in buildings he claimed were Swedish libraries and research institutes. As the war drew to a close, his invaluable work almost complete, Wallenberg voluntarily went to meet with the Soviet troops who were relieving the city. Arrested as a spy, Wallenberg disappeared into the depths of the Soviet system, never to be seen again. For this seminal biography, Ingrid Carlberg has carried out unprecedented research into all elements of Wallenberg's life, narrating with vigour and insight the story of a heroic life, and navigating with wisdom and sensitivity the truth about his disappearance and death.
  • AWRDQ
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    Over the course of five years, acclaimed photographer Harry Borden has travelled the globe photographing survivors of the Holocaust. The people featured vary in age, gender and nationality, but are all tied together by their experience and survival of one of the darkest moments in human history. Each photograph is accompanied by a handwritten note from the sitter, ranging from poems, to memories, to hopes for the future, creating a strong sense of intimacy between sitter and reader. This intimacy is amplified by the home settings of many of the photographs, along with the photographer's use of available light at each scene. At the end of the book is a section providing more information about the person in each portrait, and about how and what they survived, together with the historical context of the events they lived through. Thought-provoking and touching, this book conveys the dignity and humanity of each subject's character. Survivor is a unique and powerful testimony of what it is to live with memories of the Holocaust.
  • AQYPC
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    On 1 February 1940, a thirty-three-year-old Jewish woman arrived alone in New York Harbor bearing, in her womb, the person who would eventually become the author of this book. Ernestyna Goldwasser had left behind her family, steeped in the rich Jewish culture of Krakow, to seek sanctuary from the marauding Germans, who had invaded Poland the previous fall. As the child of a father who held US citizenship, Ernestyna enjoyed a special status that became priceless when the war broke out. She, too, was deemed a US citizen and thereby eligible to emigrate out of Poland. Unfortunately, Ernestyna's husband, Chaskel Goldwasser, enjoyed no such status. As his wife, pregnant with their first child, embarked on her journey, Chaskel was forced to remain behind, trapped in the inferno that was soon to engulf and incinerate one third of the world's Jewish population. Ernestyna entered the US through the famed golden door mentioned in the final words of the Emma Lazarus poem that graces the Statue of Liberty. Unfortunately, because of the anti-Semitic policies of the US State Department, that door remained shut tight to Chaskel. During Ernestyna's valiant struggle to reunite with her husband, they were able to maintain an intimate and highly emotional correspondence. Many of their letters have been preserved and are presented in this volume as a first-person account of their desperate struggle to find the key that would unlock Chaskel's imprisonment...before it was too late.
  • AXBNJ
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    The Geneva-based International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is one of the world's oldest, most prominent, and revered aid organizations. But at the end of World War II things could not have looked more different. Under fire for its failure to speak out against the Holocaust or to extend substantial assistance to Jews trapped in Nazi camps across Europe, the ICRC desperately needed to salvage its reputation in order to remain relevant in the post-war world. Indeed, the whole future of Switzerland's humanitarian flagship looked to hang in the balance at this time. Torn between defending Swiss neutrality and battling Communist critics in the early Cold War, the Red Cross leadership in Geneva emerged from the world war with a new commitment to protecting civilians caught in the crossfire of conflict. Yet they did so while interfering with Allied de-nazification efforts in Germany and elsewhere, and coming to the defence of former Nazis at the Nuremberg Trials. Not least, they provided the tools for many of Hitler's former henchmen, notorious figures such as Joseph Mengele and Adolf Eichmann, to slip out of Europe and escape prosecution - behaviour which did little to silence those critics in the Allied powers who unfavourably compared the 'shabby' neutrality of the Swiss with the 'good neutrality' of the Swedes, their eager rivals for leadership in international humanitarian initiatives. However, in spite of all this, by the end of the decade, the ICRC had emerged triumphant from its moment of existential crisis, navigating the new global order to reaffirm its leadership in world humanitarian affairs against the challenge of the Swedes, and playing a formative role in rewriting the rules of war in the Geneva Conventions of 1949. This uncompromising new history tells the remarkable and intriguing story of how the ICRC achieved this - successfully escaping the shadow of its ambiguous wartime record to forge a new role and a new identity in the post-1945 world.
  • AFPWL
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    As head of the SS, chief of police, 'Reichskommissar for the Consolidation of Germanness', and Reich Interior Minister, Heinrich Himmler enjoyed a position of almost unparalleled power and responsibility in Nazi Germany. Perhaps more than any other single Nazi leader aside from Hitler, his name has become a byword for the terror, persecution, and destruction that characterized the Third Reich. His wide-ranging powers meant that he bore equal responsibility for the repression of the German people on the home front and the atrocities perpetrated by the SS in the East. Yet, in spite of his central role in the crimes of the Nazi regime, until now Himmler has remained a colourless and elusive figure in the history of the period. In this, the first-ever comprehensive biography of the SS-Reichsfuhrer, leading German historian Peter Longerich puts every aspect of Himmler's life under the microscope. Masterfully interweaving the story of Himmler's personal life and political career with the wider history of the Nazi dictatorship, Longerich shows how skilfully he exploited and manipulated his disparate roles in the pursuit of his far-reaching and grandiose objectives. In the process, he illuminates the extraordinary degree to which Himmler's own personal prejudices, idiosyncrasies, and predilections made their mark on the organizations for which he was responsible - especially the SS, which in so many ways bore the characteristic hallmarks of its leader, and whose history remains both incomplete and incomprehensible without a detailed and intimate knowledge of its deeply sinister commander-in-chief.
  • BMHGD
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    At age thirty in 1919, Adolf Hitler had no accomplishments. He was a rootless loner, a corporal in a shattered army, without money or prospects. A little more than twenty years later, in autumn 1941, he directed his dynamic forces against the Soviet Union, and in December, the Germans were at the gates of Moscow and Leningrad. At that moment, Hitler appeared - however briefly - to be the most powerful ruler on the planet. Given this dramatic turn of events, it is little wonder that since 1945 generations of historians keep trying to explain how it all happened. This richly illustrated history provides a readable and fresh approach to the complex history of the Third Reich, from the coming to power of the Nazis in 1933 to the final collapse in 1945. Using photographs, paintings, propaganda images, and a host of other such materials from a wide range of sources, including official documents, cinema, and the photography of contemporary amateurs, foreigners, and the Allied armies, it distils our ideas about the period and provides a balanced and accessible account of the whole era.
  • BJJSE
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    The Nuremberg Interviews reveals the chilling innermost thoughts of the former Nazi officials under indictment at the famous postwar trial. The architects of one of history's greatest atrocities speak out about their lives, their careers in the Nazi Party and their views on the Holocaust. Their reflections are recorded in a set of interviews conducted by a U.S. Army psychiatrist. Dr Leon Goldensohn was entrusted with monitoring the mental health of the two dozen German leaders charged with carrying out genocide, as well as that of many of the defence and prosecution witnesses. These recorded conversations have gone largely unexamined for more than fifty years. Here are interviews with some of the highest-ranking Nazi officials in the Nuremberg jails, including Hans Frank, Hermann Goering, Ernest Kaltenbrunner, and Joachim von Ribbentrop. Here, too, are interviews with lesser-known officials who were, nonetheless, essential to the workings of the Third Reich. Goldensohn was a particularly astute interviewer, his training as a psychiatrist leading him to probe the motives, the rationales, and the skewing of morality that allowed these men to enact an unfathomable evil. Candid and often shockingly truthful, these interviews are deeply disturbing in their illumination of an ideology gone mad. Each interview is annotated with biographical information and footnotes that place the man and his actions in their historical context and are a profoundly important addition to our understanding of the Nazi mind and mission.
  • AHLDY
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    The story of Raoul Wallenberg - who, at immense personal risk, rescued many of Budapest's Jews from the Holocaust - is one of the most remarkable of World War II. Yet the complete account of his life and fate can only be told now - and for the first time in this book - following access to the Russian archives, previously unavailable. Wallenberg was a Swedish businessman, recruited by the War Refugee Board to rescue thousands of Hungarian Jews. Once in Budapest, he created and distributed so called 'protection passports' among the Jewish population, thus managing to save up to 7,000 people. Through the 'safe houses' and clandestine networks that he established around the city, many thousands more were saved from the concentration camps. Yet, when Budapest was liberated by the Red Army in January 1945, Wallenberg was arrested, taken to Moscow and disappeared into the Soviet prison system. Using previously unseen sources, Jangfeldt has been able to reconstruct the events surrounding Wallenberg's arrest almost hour by hour and, for the first time, he presents evidence of why Wallenberg was arrested and what happened to him after he disappeared.
  • AWREA
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    This landmark work answers two of the most fundamental questions in history - how, and why, did the Holocaust happen? Laurence Rees has spent twenty-five years meeting survivors and perpetrators of the Holocaust. Now, in his magnum opus, he combines their enthralling eyewitness testimony, a large amount of which has never been published before, with the latest academic research to create the first accessible and authoritative account of the Holocaust in more than three decades. This is a new history of the Holocaust in three ways. First, and most importantly, Rees has created a gripping narrative that that contains a large amount of testimony that has never been published before. Second, he places this powerful interview material in the context of an examination of the decision making process of the Nazi state, and in the process reveals the series of escalations that cumulatively created the horror. Third, Rees covers all those across Europe who participated in the deaths, and he argues that whilst hatred of the Jews was always at the epicentre of Nazi thinking, what happened cannot be fully understood without considering the murder of the Jews alongside plans to kill millions of non-Jews, including homosexuals, 'Gypsies' and the disabled. Through a chronological, intensely readable narrative, featuring enthralling eyewitness testimony and the latest academic research, this is a compelling new account of the worst crime in history.
  • AUHGL
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    This inspiring book examines the often incredible and nearly always tragic examples of Jewish resistance in ghettos and concentration camps during the Nazis 'Final Solution'. It shows that the Warsaw Uprising in Poland during April to May 1944 was not the only occasion of defiant opposition. Throughout the Nazis' extermination programme Jews and other prisoners fought back against their murderers, often with stunning results. The Germans were nearly always taken by surprise by the sudden emergence of armed Jewish resistance and often paid dearly. This happened in ghettos and concentration campos (including Treblinka, Auschwitz, Syrels and Sobibor) throughout Poland and the Ukraine. Some Jews tried to stop the machinery of the Holocaust by rising up and destroying the gas chambers while others bravely tried to take over an extermination camp and escape en masse. In virtually every case the brave men and women who volunteered to fight back paid with their lives. Importantly these men and women are not just portrayed as victims but also as brave and resourceful fighters and resisters against their tragic fate.These are stories that are uplifting, inspiring and often profoundly moving.
  • BOLWD
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    The Dutch resistance movement during the Nazi occupation was bedevilled by treachery, betrayal and poor organization and support from London. Despite these serious problems, the brave men and women of the Dutch resistance who refused to accept domination by their brutal oppressors, made a significant contribution to the war effort albeit at a terrible cost. Their contribution which included escape routes for Allied aircrew and acts of sabotage has been largely over-looked. While the author focuses on the activity and fate of her husband's father, Henry Scharrer, her superbly researched book ranges far wider. As well as introducing a large cast of resistance workers, double agents and Nazis, she describes many of the operations, successful and disastrous, and analyses the results. Too often, as in Henry Scharrer's case, the outcome was tragic. This gripping true account of extraordinary heroism and betrayal demonstrates both the best and worst of human conduct in extreme conditions.
  • AUYWE
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    For desperate families trapped inside the Warsaw ghetto in 1942 with small children, one name was whispered urgently. It was the name of a young social worker in her thirties with the courage to take staggering risks and to save over 2,000 of those children from death and deportation. Granted access to the ghetto as a public health specialist, Irena Sendler began by smuggling orphaned children out of the walled district and convincing her friends and neighbours to hide them. Soon, she began the perilous work of going from door to door and asking Jewish families to trust her with their young children. Driven to extreme measures and with the help of local Warsaw tradesman, Jewish residents, a network of mothers and her star-crossed lover in the Polish resistance, Irena Sendler ultimately smuggled thousands of children past the Nazis, making dangerous trips through city's sewers, hiding them in coffins and under overcoats at check points, and slipping through secret passages in abandoned buildings. At immense personal risk, Irena Sendler did something even more astonishing: she kept a secret list buried in a jar under an old apple tree in her garden. On it were the names and true identities of these Jewish children, recorded so that after the war their families could find them. Celebrated for her courage, Sendler was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 2007, the year before her death at the age of 98. The story of Irena Sendler - and of the children she saved - has until now never been told in a compelling narrative account.
  • BAYZR
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    In November 1938 about 30,000 German Jewish men were taken to concentration camps where they were subjected to torture, starvation and arbitrary death. In Four Thousand Lives, Clare Ungerson tells the remarkable story of how the grandees of Anglo-Jewry persuaded the British Government to allow them to establish a transit camp in Sandwich, East Kent, to which up to 4,000 men could be brought while they waited for permanent settlement overseas. The whole rescue was funded by the British Jewish community, with help from American Jewry. Most of the men had to leave their families behind. Would they get them out in time? And how would the people of Sandwich - a town the same size as the camp - react to so many German speaking Jewish foreigners? There was a well-organised branch of the British Union of Fascists in Sandwich. Lady Pearson, the BUF candidate for Canterbury, was President of the Sandwich Chamber of Commerce and Captain Gordon Canning, a prominent Fascist and close friend of Oswald Mosley, lived there and he and his grand friends used to meet there to play golf. This background adds to the drama of the race against time to save lives. Four Thousand Lives is not just a story of salvation, but also a revealing account of how a small English community reacted to the arrival of so many German Jews in their midst.
  • ADKOR
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    A comprehensive history of the Nazi persecution and murder of European Jews, paying detailed attention to an unrivalled range sources. Focusing clearly on the perpetrators and exploring closely the process of decision making, Longerich argues that anti-Semitism was not a mere by-product of the Nazis' political mobilization or an attempt to deflect the attention of the masses, but that anti-Jewish policy was a central tenet of the Nazi movement's attempts to implement, disseminate, and secure National Socialist rule - and one which crucially shaped Nazi policy decisions, from their earliest days in power through to the invasion of the Soviet Union and the Final Solution. As Longerich shows, the 'disappearance' of Jews was designed as a first step towards a racially homogeneous society - first within the 'Reich', later in the whole of a German-dominated Europe.
  • BBBWQ
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    Jonathan Dean's great-grandfather, David Schapira, lived a life of epic achievement and epic suffering. Forced to flee Ukraine at the outbreak of World War I, he was blinded fighting for his adopted country then survived - just - the concentration camp that country later sent him to. In between he found love and laughter in Vienna, and became the first Austrian lawyer to train using braille - something no Briton would do until the new century dawned. Dean's grandfather, Heinz Schapira, was also a refugee. Aged 16, he said goodbye to his parents and embarked on a nail-biting journey to Britain, to escape his fate as an Austrian Jew. The prejudice he faced and assimilation he achieved are laid out in the pages of his diary, pages filled with pain and joy, surprising observations and irrepressible humour. But this is no ordinary family history. As Dean visits the places which changed the course of his family tree - Vienna, Cologne, Ukraine - he finds history repeating itself. He talks to refugees from the Middle East, people who left their homes and families at the same age as David and Heinz. And he observes the warning signs: the bigoted excesses of Brexit Britain, the rise of the Far Right in Austria, the backlash against refugees in Germany. By viewing these contemporary experiences through the prism of his family history - and vice versa - Dean creates an impassioned, profoundly timely study of what it means to be a refugee, to be European and, ultimately, to be British.
  • BMDZI
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    `I know no one ever believes us nowadays - everyone thinks we knew everything. We knew nothing. It was all a well-kept secret. We believed it. We swallowed it. It seemed entirely plausible' Brunhilde Pomsel described herself as an `apolitical girl' and a `figure on the margins'. How are we to reconcile this description with her chosen profession? Employed as a typist during the Second World War, she worked closely with one of the worst criminals in world history: Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels. She was one of the oldest surviving eyewitnesses to the internal workings of the Nazi power apparatus until her death in 2017. Her life, mirroring all the major breaks and continuities of the twentieth century, illustrates how far-right politics, authoritarian regimes and dictatorships can rise, and how political apathy can erode democracy. Compelling and unnerving, The Work I Did gives us intimate insight into political complexity at society's highest levels - at one of history's darkest moments.
  • AMDIV
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    The Holocaust has never been so widely commemorated, but our understanding of the accepted narrative has rarely, if ever, been questioned. David Cesarani's sweeping reappraisal challenges accepted explanations for the anti-Jewish politics of Nazi Germany and the inevitability of the 'Final Solution'. The persecution of the Jews was not always the Nazis' central preoccupation, nor was it an inevitable process. Cesarani also reveals that in German-occupied countries it unfolded erratically, often due to local initiatives. Ghettos were improvised while the mass shooting of Jews during the invasion of Russia owed as much to the security situation as to anti-semitism. In this new interpretation, war is critical to the Jewish fate. Military failure denied the Germans opportunities to expel Jews into a distant territory and created a crisis of resources that led to starvation of the ghettos and intensified anti-Jewish measures. It was global war that eventually triggered genocide in Europe. Cesarani disputes the iconic role of railways, deportation trains and even Auschwitz, and reveals that plunder was more a cause of anti-Jewish feeling than a consequence of it. Using diaries and reports written in ghettos and camps, he exposes the extent of sexual violence and abuse of Jewish women by the Germans, their collaborators and, shockingly, by Jews themselves. But Cesarani also reveals the courage and ingenuity of those who struggled to evade capture and fought back wherever they could. And unlike previous histories, he follows the Jews' journey to the 'Displaced Persons' camps; camps which have so often been merely a footnote in the story but where Jews languished behind barbed wire for years after 'liberation'. This moving and dramatic account captures the fate of the Jews, the horror and the heroism, in their own words. Resting on decades of scholarship it is compelling, authoritative, and profoundly disturbing.
  • AYXLQ
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    'Moving - at times almost unbearably so - and fascinating' Antonia Fraser A family's story of human tenacity, faith and a race for survival in the face of unspeakable horror and cruelty perpetrated by the Nazi regime against the Jewish people. Growing up in the safety of Britain, Jonathan Wittenberg was deeply aware of his legacy as the child of refugees from Nazi Germany. Yet, like so many others there is much he failed to ask while those who could have answered his questions were still alive. After burying their aunt Steffi in the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives, Jonathan, now a rabbi, accompanies his cousin Michal as she begins to clear the flat in Jerusalem where the family have lived since fleeing Germany in the 1930s. Inside an old suitcase abandoned on the balcony they discover a linen bag containing a bundle of letters left untouched for decades. Jonathan's attention is immediately captivated as he tries to decipher the faded writing on the long-forgotten letters. They eventually draw him into a profound and challenging quest to uncover the painful details of his father's family's history. Through the wartime correspondence of his great-grandmother Regina and his grandmother, aunts and uncles, Jonathan weaves together the strands of an ancient rabbinical family with the history of Europe during the Second World War and the unfolding policies of the Nazis, telling the moving story of a family whose lives are as fragile as the paper on which they write, but whose faith in God remains steadfast.
  • AQSLN
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    In 1943, hidden by the Resistance in a French convent, Moriz Scheyer began drafting an account of his wartime experiences: a tense, moving, at times almost miraculous story of flight and persecution in Austria and France. As arts editor of Vienna's principal newspaper before the German annexation of Austria, Scheyer had known the city's great artists, including Stefan Zweig and Gustav Mahler, and was himself an important literary journalist. In this book he brings his distinctive critical and emotional voice to bear on his own extraordinary experiences: Vienna at the Anschluss; Paris immediately pre-war and under Nazi occupation; the 'Exodus'; two periods of incarceration in French concentration camps; contact with the Resistance; a failed attempt at escape to Switzerland; and a dramatic rescue followed by clandestine life in a mental asylum run by Franciscan nuns. Completed in 1945, Scheyer's memoir is remarkable not just for the riveting events that it recounts, but as a near-unique survivor's perspective from that time.
  • AWGTB
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    Auschwitz and Birkenau were separate from each other,by about a 45 minute walk. Auschwitz was adapted to hold political prisoners in 1940 and evolved into a killing machine in 1941. Later that year a new site called Birkenau was found to extend the Auschwitz complex. Here a vast complex of buildings were constructed to hold initially Russian POWs and later Jews as a labour pool for the surrounding industries including IG Farben. Following the January 1943 Wannsee Conference, Birkenau evolved into a murder factory using makeshift houses which were adapted to kill Jews and Russian POWs. Later due to sheer volume Birkenau evolved into a mass killing machine using gas chambers and crematoria, while Auschwitz, which still held prisoners, became the administrative centre. The images show first Auschwitz main camp and then Birkenau and are carefully chosen to illustrate specific areas, like the Women's Camp, Gypsy Camp, SS quarters, Commandant's House, railway disembarkation, the 'sauna', disinfection area and the Crematoria. Maps covering Auschwitz and Birkenau explain the layout. This book is shocking proof of the scale of the Holocaust.
  • AWONC
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    David Cesarani's Final Solution is an intelligent and thought-provoking short history of the Holocaust. Not only does David Cesarani draw together and engage with the latest scholarly research, making extensive use of previously untapped resources such as diaries and letters from within the ghettos and camps (many of them in Polish or Yiddish and therefore previously largely inaccessible to Anglo-American scholars) but by adopting a rigorously Judeocentric approach the whole narrative of the march to genocide and its aftermath the book presents a subtly different timeline which casts afresh the horror of the period and engenders a significant re-evaluation of the how and why. Eschewing some of the more fevered theses about the guilt of the perpetrators (and indeed recasting how wide that net should be spread), David Cesarani's measured and skilful negotiation of a crowded field is, as a result, all the more devastating.