Is there a collective memory of crime? Remembering the Holocaust in Germany from 1945 until today
Book part (Published version)
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In Мау 2003 Nicolas Berg published his study "Der Holocaust und die westdeutschen Historiker". In his study, Berg explores the reasons why the Holocaust was marginalized in West German historiography for so long. Berg claims that many West German historians, while working deservingly about the history of National Socialism, they neglected its most central part, the Holocaust, as they were unwilling to accept the guilt of countless Germans, including themselves or their fathers, brothers or teachers. Berg’s book was therefore perceived as an assault on the moral integrity of the West German historians, who devoted their studies to "Zeitgeschichte" (contemporary history) and up to this point had been considered a moral authority, because they were professionally dealing with "Vergangenheitsbewaltigung" (coming to terms with the past), which became a central factor of German identity. Starting with Norbert Frei’s review in the "Süddeutsche Zeitung", there arose a heated discussion about t...he book from the very same day it was published. The German feuilletons had a new "historians’ debate".
Keywords:collective memory - perpetrators / Holocaust - Germany
Source:Kladovo transport: zbornik radova sa okruglog stola, 2006, 411-427
- Belgrade : The Jewish Historical Musem of Federation of Jewish Communities in Yugoslavia