This course focuses on the destruction of Jews in Europe by Nazi Germany,
but the true scope of the course is much broader; exploring also the shifting
historical conditions from which the Holocaust emerged. Students will explore
memoirs, historical documents, poetry, documentary footage, filmic representations,
novels, and other media that help to illustrate the multiplicity and variety
of human experience during this important historical episode.
By the end of the course, you will have an expanded knowledge and understanding
of Eastern and Western Jewish communities, the origins and development
of antisemitism, the formation and operation of concentration camps, the
resistance movements, and the Holocaust as a problem for world-history.
Additionally, you will have engaged with the problematics of representation,
memory, "the memorial", and witnessing.
This course is supported by the Neufeld-Levin Chair in Holocaust
Module 1 - Emancipation, Acculturation, and Assimilation
Tec, Nehama. Dry Tears.
Bauer. Chapter One "Who are the Jews?"
Pagis, some poems will be provided
Image Before My Eyes
Module 2 - Shtetl Life and the Pale of Settlement
Sholem Aleichem's "On Account of a Hat"
Bauer. Chapter Two
Everything Is Illuminated
Module 3 - Narrating Modern Jewish Success and Nazi Antisemitism
Levi, Primo. Survival in Auschwitz (part 1)
Bauer. Chapters 6&7
Module 4 - Witnessing and Postmemory
Levi, Primo. Survival in Auschwitz (part 2)
Wiesel, Elie. Night. (part 1)
Bauer. Chapters 8&9
Paul Celan's poem "Death Fugue"
Night & Fog
Module 5 - Nazi Racial Laws/Demolition of the Jews
Wiesel, Elie. Night (part 2)
Schwartz-Bart. The Last of the Just [excerpts]
Module 6 - Nazi Germany and the Totalitarian State
Browning, Christopher. Ordinary Men.
Bauer. Chapter 11
Divided We Fall
Module 7 - Ghettos/Resistance
Arieti, Silvano. The Parnas
Bauer. Chapter 12
Partisans of Vilna
Module 8 - Establishing Extermination Centers
Borowski, Tadeusz. The Way for the Gas Ladies and Gentlemen
The Wannsee Conference
Module 9 - The Hungarian Experience of the Holocaust
Kertész, Imre. Fatelessness
Kertész, Imre. "Who Owns Auschwitz?"
Bauer. Chapter 14
Module 10 - Deportations & The Legacy of the Holocaust
Ida. A Scrap of Time
The Shop on Main Street
Murray Baumgarten and Peter Kenez