By Norman G. Finkelstein, Ruth Bettina Birn
No contemporary paintings of heritage has generated as a lot curiosity as Daniel Jonah Goldhagen's Hitler's prepared Executioners. Purporting to unravel the secret of the Nazi holocaust, Goldhagen keeps that standard Germans have been pushed via fanatical anti-Semitism to homicide the Jews. a right away nationwide best-seller, the booklet went directly to create a global sensation.
Now, in A kingdom on Trial, prime critics problem Goldhagen's findings and convey that his paintings isn't scholarship in any respect. With compelling cumulative influence, Norman G. Finkelstein meticulously files Goldhagen's distortions of secondary literature and the interior contradictions of his argument. In a complementary essay, Ruth Bettina Birn juxtaposes Goldhagen's textual content opposed to the German documents he consulted. the major foreign authority on those files, Birn conclusively demonstrates that Goldhagen systematically misrepresented their contents.
The definitive assertion at the Goldhagen phenomenon, this quantity is additionally a cautionary story at the corruption of scholarship by way of ideological zealotry.
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Additional resources for A Nation on Trial: The Goldhagen Thesis and Historical Truth
Like us, most of the civilians were trying to get away from the invading Germans. Every day there were more people on the road. We slept in open fields or in barns and made little progress in our move east. The farmers would charge us for the use of their barns and sell us food. Often, the barns would already be rented out by the time we got there, and then we would have to sleep outside. Some farmers were kind to us; others were not. The latter frequently called us bad names. Here I first learned that we were “Parzywe Zydzi” — Scabby Jews.
That alone is what matters. And the reader must surely be thankful to him for it. — Elie Wiesel Preface THIS BOOK SHOULD PROBABLY HAVE BEEN WRITTEN MANY years ago when the events I describe were still fresh in my mind. But my other life intervened — the life I have lived since I arrived in the United States in 1951, a life filled with educational, professional, and family responsibilities that left little time for the past. It may also be that, without realizing it, I needed the distance of more than half a century to record my earlier life, for it allowed me to look at my childhood experiences with greater detachment and without dwelling on many details that are not really central to the story I now consider important to tell.
The train began to shake. The noise was terrible. My father grabbed my mother and me and pushed us out of the train. ” he screamed above the noise. ” Some people had already jumped from the train and were scrambling across the tracks into the fields. We followed them, pushed on by others. The Polish soldiers began to shoot at the German planes with rifles held out of their train’s windows. They did not have much luck. The planes kept swooping down on the trains and the railroad tracks, blowing up some of the carriages.