Explores the Holocaust as crucial event of the twentieth century. Examines the origins of the Holocaust, perpetrators and victims, and efforts to come to terms with this genocide in Europe, Israel, and the United States. Offered: jointly with JSIS C 269.
The Holocaust, the murder of six million Jews by Germans in Nazi-occupied Europe during the Second World War, is one of the crucial events of modern history. This course examines the origins, events, and consequences of the Holocaust, and explores how people were drawn into the process as victims and perpetrators. We will explore the role of modern institutions, such as nation-states and bureaucracies, as well as the influence of ideologies, such as anti-semitism, scientific racism, and nationalism, on the development of systematic mass killing. We will also consider the genocide of European Jewry in relation to the Nazi targeting of other victims, including Roma, Slavs, the disabled, black Germans, homosexuals, and political opponents of the regime. Other topics will include: debates about the implementation of genocide; the role of gender and sexuality; the meaning of resistance and complicity; the influence of war on genocide; and the philosophical implications of the Holocaust. Finally, the course will address some of the ways in which political conditions since the Second World War have influenced memory of the Holocaust and interpretations of its significance.
Student learning goals
General method of instruction
This course will include lectures and discussion.
There are no pre-requisites for this course.
Class assignments and grading
Students will be expected to attend lectures, participate in class discussion and group activities, and complete assigned reading. Students will also complete two short papers and take one in-class final exam.
Students are required to complete all assignments in order to pass the course. Grades will be calculated on the basis of the papers, the exam and students' performance and participation in class discussion and group activities.