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HIST 471: A Guide to Holocaust Memory

This guide aids in providing resources that will help students and researchers investigate public engagement with the Holocaust.

Holocaust in the US News

Holocaust Politics

Holocaust Politics

  • Bringing the Dark Past To Light: The Reception of the Holocaust in Postcommunist Europe. Edited by John-Paul Himka and Joanna Beata Michlic. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2013.
  • Commemorating the Holocaust: The Dilemmas of Remembrance in France and Italy. Edited by Rebecca Clifford. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2013.
  • Contemporary Responses to the Holocaust. Edited by Konrad Kwiet and Jürgen Mattäus. Westport, CN: Praeger, 2004.
  • Douglas, Lawrence. The Memory of Judgement: Making Law and History in the Trials of the Holocaust. New Haven, CN: Yale University Press, 2001.
  • Eder, Jacob. Holocaust Angst: The Federal Republic of German and American Holocaust Memory since the 1970s.New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2016.
  • Kansteiner, Wulf. In Pursuit of German Memory: History, Politics, and Television after Auschwitz. Athens, OH: Ohio University Press, 2006.
  • Lipstadt, Deborah. Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory. United Kingdom: Penguin Random House, 1995.
  • Rothberg, Michael. Multidirectional Memory: Remembering the Holocaust in the Age of Decolonization. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2009.

Presidents, Politics, and the Holocaust

President Roosevelt and the Holocaust

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) was inaugurated only five weeks after Adolf Hitler is declared the German Chancellor. FDR chose to focus on helping Americans suffering from the Great Depression rather than helping German Jews by protesting their treatment or altering existing immigration laws that would allow more German Jews admission to the States. The European Refugee Crisis continued to mount, but FDR did not urge Congress to expand immigration quotas.

After the Germans invaded Poland in 1939 and launched Europe into WWII, FDR stated that the United States would remain neutral. FDR won a third term as President and began preparing the US for War. His focus became winning the war to save all civilians, though he and the American people began to receive more information about mass killings against the Jews. To relieve public pressure and tension within his administration FDR established the War Refugee Board (WRB) to rescue and provide relief for Jews and other groups being persecuted by Nazi Germany. The Board began a series of limited measures to help Jews, for example, they sent radio broadcasts into Europe warning of postwar punishment. The WRB also released a report that detailed the uses of the gas chambers by escapees from Auschwitz Camp.

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, "Franklin Delano Roosevelt," Accessed on [sept.13, 2019]

Holocaust Political Cartoons

Stamp Out Hitlerism

Newspapers used political cartoons to demonstrate the many stances communities took for supporting or discouraging war efforts.

Anti-German Sentiment

Anti-German sentiment did not go away after the end of the first World War, and it continued into and during World War II.

America - Slow to react

This Dr. Seuss political cartoon reflects America's neutrality during the beginning of the War, even though President Franklin D. Roosevelt was aware of Hitler's atrocities.