Ordinary Jews Choice and Survival During the Holocaust

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Ordinary Jews Choice and Survival During the Holocaust
Type:
Non Fiction
Author:
Evgeny Finkel
Publisher:
Princeton Uni Press
ISBN:
9780691172576
Publication Date:
-
Edition:
-
Format:
-
Item Location:
POLITICS
Availability:

Availability: Out of stock

Price:
$56.99

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DESCRIPTION
Focusing on the choices and actions of Jews during the Holocaust, Ordinary Jews examines the different patterns of behavior of civilians targeted by mass violence. Relying on rich archival material and hundreds of survivors' testimonies, Evgeny Finkel presents a new framework for understanding the survival strategies in which Jews engaged: cooperation and collaboration, coping and compliance, evasion, and resistance. Finkel compares Jews' behavior in three Jewish ghettos--Minsk, Krakow, and Bia?ystok--and shows that Jews' responses to Nazi genocide varied based on their experiences with prewar policies that either promoted or discouraged their integration into non-Jewish society. Finkel demonstrates that while possible survival strategies were the same for everyone, individuals' choices varied across and within communities. In more cohesive and robust Jewish communities, coping--confronting the danger and trying to survive without leaving--was more organized and successful, while collaboration with the Nazis and attempts to escape the ghetto were minimal. In more heterogeneous Jewish communities, collaboration with the Nazis was more pervasive, while coping was disorganized. In localities with a history of peaceful interethnic relations, evasion was more widespread than in places where interethnic relations were hostile. State repression before WWII, to which local communities were subject, determined the viability of anti-Nazi Jewish resistance. Exploring the critical influences shaping the decisions made by Jews in Nazi-occupied eastern Europe, Ordinary Jews sheds new light on the dynamics of collective violence and genocide.
REVIEWS
"A political scientist turns fresh eyes on the problem of how European Jews responded to the Holocaust as it was unfolding... Of much interest to students of modern history but also to those engaged in humanitarian relief efforts, refugee relocation, and the like."--Kirkus "Instances of ... mass hysteria have been appearing on a weekly basis, revealing an historical illiteracy so vast that it could contain 1,000 books on the Holocaust. If the ignorant could read only one of them ... Ordinary Jews would be an excellent way to begin their education."--Stefan Kanfer, City Journal
AUTHOR INFORMATION
Evgeny Finkel is assistant professor of political science and international affairs at George Washington University.

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