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New Books in Genocide Studies

Marshall Poe

103
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787
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New Books in Genocide Studies

New Books in Genocide Studies

Marshall Poe

103
Followers
787
Plays
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Interviews with Scholars of Genocide about their New Books

Latest Episodes

Frank Jacob, "Japanese War Crimes during World War II: Atrocity and the Psychology of Collective Violence" (Praeger, 2018)

When you mention Japanese War crimes in World War Two, you’ll often get different responses from different generations.The oldest among us will talk about the Bataan Death March.Younger people, coming of age in the 1990s, will mention the Rape of Nanking or the comfort women forced into service by the Japanese army.Occasionally, someone will mention biological warfare. Frank Jacob has offered a valuable service by surveying Japanese mistreatment of civilians and soldiers comprehensively.His book, Japanese War Crimes during World War II: Atrocity and the Psychology of Collective Violence (Praeger, 2018), is short and doesn’t treat any event or issue in depth.But he offers a lucid and thorough evaluation of the literature and nuggets of additional insight.And he frames it with a thoughtful attempt to explain the conduct about which he is writing. If you’re looking for a deep dive into a particular topic, you’re not the audience Jacob had in mind.But this is a good place to come to grips with the broad picture of Japanese misconduct during the war. Kelly McFall is Professor of History and Director of the Honors Program at Newman University. He’s the author of four modules in the Reacting to the Past series, includingThe Needs of Others: Human Rights, International Organizations and Intervention in Rwanda, 1994, published by W. W. Norton Press. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

65 min2 d ago
Comments
Frank Jacob, "Japanese War Crimes during World War II: Atrocity and the Psychology of Collective Violence" (Praeger, 2018)

Bernice Lerner, "All the Horrors of War: A Jewish Girl, a British Doctor, and the Liberation of Bergen-Belsen" (Johns Hopkins UP, 2020)

One was a teenage Jewish girl, forcibly transported from her home in Hungary to a Nazi concentration camp. The other was a British doctor, whose experiences serving in two world wars could not compare to the horrors he saw at the end of the war. In her book All the Horrors of War: A Jewish Girl, a British Doctor, and the Liberation of Bergen-Belsen (Johns Hopkins UP, 2020), Bernice Lerner describes their lives – one of them her mother, the other one of the people who helped save her – and how they intersected when British forces liberated Bergen-Belsen in April 1945. For Rachel Genuth, her life began to change when Hungarian troops marched into the formerly Romanian town of Sighet in September 1940. From that point onward, her family’s lives and those of her neighbors were increasingly restricted until they were deported to Auschwitz in the spring of 1944. While she struggled to survive, H. L. Glyn Hughes, the deputy director of medical services for the British VIII Corps, participated in the Allied liberation of western Europe, an experience that brought him to the Bergen-Belsen camp, where Rachel had been marched ahead of the Soviet advance to the east. Hughes spent the next several months organizing an unprecedented relief operation, trying desperately to save lives of thousands suffering from starvation and disease. Among them was Rachel, who was subsequently evacuated to Sweden, where she began the slow process of restarting her live after having survived so much death. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

45 min1 w ago
Comments
Bernice Lerner, "All the Horrors of War: A Jewish Girl, a British Doctor, and the Liberation of Bergen-Belsen" (Johns Hopkins UP, 2020)

Eric Weiner, "The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places" (Simon and Schuster, 2016)

Living, as we do, in a time in which a U.S. president anoints himself “a very stable genius”, we are particularly appreciative of Eric Weiner, a former foreign correspondent for NPR who writes with humility and humor, as he brings us along with him on his travels to times and places that produced genius. Beginning with Athens in the Golden age, and ending with Palo Alto in the Silicon age, Weiner steps lightly through a most serious and fascinating topic, aided and supplemented with the latest social science research on creativity and its cultivation. The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places (Simon and Schuster, 2016) is an intellectual odyssey that examines the connection between our surroundings and our most innovative ideas, and has fun doing it. What inspires genius? Why do certain urban settings – and certain historical challenges – foster innovation? Would geniuses like Socrates, Michelangelo, Einstein and Disney have flourished, had they found themselves in other locations and other historical circumstances? Renee Garfinkel, Ph.D. is a psychologist, writer, Middle East television commentator and host of The New Books Network’s Van Leer Jerusalem Series on Ideas. Write her at r.garfinkel@yahoo.com or tweet @embracingwisdom. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

40 min2 w ago
Comments
Eric Weiner, "The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places" (Simon and Schuster, 2016)

William L. Patterson, "We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People" (International Publishers, 2017)

In 2017, We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People, the historic petition authored by William L. Patterson, was published in its third edition. It has been nearly 70 years since Patterson, who passed away in 1980, and Paul Roberson, who passed away in 1976, presented the petition to the United Nations General Assembly, charging the United States government with genocide under the United National Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. William L. Patterson was born in San Francisco on August 27th, 1891. He died in New York City in 1980. Jarvis Tyner, executive vice chair of the Communist Party USA, and active public spokesperson against racism, imperialism and war, joins me to discuss his prologue to the third edition of We Charge Genocide, as well as its history and ongoing relevance today. Jeff Bachmanis a Senior Lecturer in Human Rights at American University’s School of International Service in Washington, DC. He is the au...

40 minSEP 25
Comments
William L. Patterson, "We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People" (International Publishers, 2017)

David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP, 2020)

The Rwandan genocide, the Holocaust, the lynching of African Americans, the colonial slave trade: these are horrific episodes of mass violence spawned from racism and hatred. We like to think that we could never see such evils again--that we would stand up and fight. But something deep in the human psyche--deeper than prejudice itself--leads people to persecute the other: dehumanization, or the human propensity to think of others as less than human. An award-winning author and philosopher, Smith takes an unflinching look at the mechanisms of the mind that encourage us to see someone as less than human. There is something peculiar and horrifying in human psychology that makes us vulnerable to thinking of whole groups of people as subhuman creatures. When governments or other groups stand to gain by exploiting this innate propensity, and know just how to manipulate words and images to trigger it, there is no limit to the violence and hatred that can result. Drawing on numerous historical and contemporary cases and recent psychological research, On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It (Oxford University Press) is the first accessible guide to the phenomenon of dehumanization. Smith walks readers through the psychology of dehumanization, revealing its underlying role in both notorious and lesser-known episodes of violence from history and current events. In particular, he considers the uncomfortable kinship between racism and dehumanization, where beliefs involving race are so often precursors to dehumanization and the horrors that flow from it. On Inhumanityis bracing and vital reading in a world lurching towards authoritarian political regimes, resurgent white nationalism, refugee crises that breed nativist hostility, and fast-spreading racist rhetoric. The book will open your eyes to the pervasive dangers of dehumanization and the prejudices that can too easily take root within us, and resist them before they spread into the wider world. David Livingstone Smith is Professor of Philosophy at the University of New England in Biddeford, Maine. Dr.YakirEnglanderis the National Director of Leadership programs at the Israeli-American Council. He also teaches at the AJR. He is a Fulbright scholar and was a visiting professor of Religion at Northwestern University, the Shalom Hartman Institute and Harvard Divinity School. His books are Sexuality and the Body in New Religious Zionist Discourse (English/Hebrew and The Male Body in Jewish Lithuanian Ultra-Orthodoxy (Hebrew). He can be reached at:Yakir1212englander@gmail.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

65 minSEP 18
Comments
David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP, 2020)

T. P. Kaplan and W. Gruner, "Resisting Persecution: Jews and Their Petitions during the Holocaust" (Berghahn, 2020)

In 20 years of studying the Holocaust, it didn’t occurr to me that German officials might, when petitioned by German Jews or by Germans advocating for German Jews, change their minds.But it turns out that, sometimes, they did. And even when they didn’t, petitioning local, regional or national officials (often all at the same time) could delay deportations or punishments or even function as a form of resistance. Resisting Persecution:Jews and Their Petitions during the Holocaust (Berghahn Books) looks at these petitions from a variety of perspectives.As editors Thomas Kaplan and Wolf Gruner argue, this is a topic that is surprisingly undercovered.And it’s a topic rich in insight and importance.The book shows clearly that petitioning was a common practice. It shows clearly that petitions were sometimes granted.It shows clearly that petitions sometimes led to unexpected and unusual outcomes. And it shows us that studying petitions sometimes opens our eyes to new ways of understanding old topics. The book isn’t the last word on petitions, nor does it pretendto be. Rather, Kaplan and Gruner open up a new avenue of investigation, one that offers researchers topics to work on for many years to come. Thomas Pegelow Kaplan is the Leon Levine Distinguished Professor and Director of the Center for Judaic, Holocaust, and Peace Studies at Appalachian State University. Wolf Gruner is the Shapell-Guerin Chair in Jewish Studies, Professor of History and Founding Director of the USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research at the University of Southern California. Kelly McFall is Professor of History and Director of the Honors Program at Newman University. He’s the author of four modules in the Reacting to the Past series, includingThe Needs of Others: Human Rights, International Organizations and Intervention in Rwanda, 1994, published by W. W. Norton Press. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

65 minSEP 8
Comments
T. P. Kaplan and W. Gruner, "Resisting Persecution: Jews and Their Petitions during the Holocaust" (Berghahn, 2020)

Carolyn J. Dean, "The Moral Witness: Trials and Testimony after Genocide" (Cornell UP, 2019)

The Moral Witness: Trials and Testimony after Genocide (Cornell University Press, 2019) is the first cultural history of the "witness to genocide" in the West. Carolyn J. Dean shows how the witness became a protagonist of twentieth-century moral culture by tracing the emergence of this figure in courtroom battles from the 1920s to the 1960s―covering the Armenian genocide, the Ukrainian pogroms, the Soviet Gulag, and the trial of Adolf Eichmann. In these trials, witness testimonies differentiated the crime of genocide from war crimes and began to form our understanding of modern political and cultural murder. By the turn of the twentieth century, the "witness to genocide" became a pervasive icon of suffering humanity and a symbol of western moral conscience. Dean sheds new light on the recent global focus on survivors' trauma. Only by placing the moral witness in a longer historical trajectory, she demonstrates, can we understand how the stories we tell about survivor testimony have...

37 minSEP 7
Comments
Carolyn J. Dean, "The Moral Witness: Trials and Testimony after Genocide" (Cornell UP, 2019)

Rafael Medoff, "The Jews Should Keep Quiet: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, and the Holocaust" (JPS, 2019)

Like so many Americans, American Jews supported President Roosevelt. They adored him. They believed in him. They idolized him. Perhaps they shouldn’t have. Based on recently discovered documents, The Jews Should Keep Quiet: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, and the Holocaust (Jewish Publication Society) reassesses the hows and whys behind the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration’s fateful policies during the Holocaust. Rafael Medoff delves into difficult truths: With FDR’s consent, the administration deliberately suppressed European immigration far below the limits set by U.S. law. His administration also refused to admit Jewish refugees to the U.S. Virgin Islands, dismissed proposals to use empty Liberty ships returning from Europe to carry refugees, and rejected pleas to drop bombs on the railways leading to Auschwitz, even while American planes were bombing targets only a few miles away—actions that would not have conflicted with the larger goal of winning the war. What motivated FDR? Medoff explores the sensitive question of the president’s private sentiments toward Jews. Unmasking strong parallels between Roosevelt’s statements regarding Jews and Asians, he connects the administration’s policies of excluding Jewish refugees and interning Japanese Americans. The Jews Should Keep Quiet further reveals how FDR’s personal relationship with Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, American Jewry’s foremost leader in the 1930s and 1940s, swayed the U.S. response to the Holocaust. Documenting how Roosevelt and others pressured Rabbi Wise to stifle American Jewish criticism of FDR’s policies, Medoff chronicles how and why the American Jewish community largely fell in line with Wise. Ultimately Medoff weighs the administration’s realistic options for rescue action, which, if taken, would have saved many lives. Rafael Medoff is founding director of the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies and coeditor of the institute’s online Encyclopedia of America’s Response to the Holocaust. Renee Garfinkel, Ph.D. is a Jerusalem-based psychologist, Middle East television commentator, and host of the Van Leer Jerusalem Series on Ideas with Renee Garfinkel Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

60 minAUG 31
Comments
Rafael Medoff, "The Jews Should Keep Quiet: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, and the Holocaust" (JPS, 2019)

Robert G. Boatright and Valerie Sperling, "Trumping Politics as Usual: Masculinity, Misogyny, and the 2016 Elections" (Oxford UP, 2019)

How did the Trump and Hillary Clinton campaigns affect other elections in 2016? How did the use of gender stereotypes and insulting references to women in the presidential campaign influence the way House and Senate candidates campaigned? The 2016 American elections forced scholars and candidates to reassess the role that gender plays in elections. In Trumping Politics as Usual: Masculinity, Misogyny, and the 2016 Elections (Oxford UP, 2019), Robert G. Boatright and Valerie Sperling (professors of political science, Clark University) focus on how gender norms are used to frame – both positively and negatively – the people who run for office. The book interrogates gender and sexism in campaigns (the “gender issue”) and what happens when the media, electorate, and candidates expect to have a clear winner and loser(the “loser” issue). Boatright and Sperling distinguish between the top of the ticket and down ballot elections to tell a story about the impact of the 2016 presidential race on competitive congressional races. They demonstrate how Donald Trump’s candidacy radically altered the nature of the congressional campaigns by making competitive races more consequential for both parties and changing the issues of contention – towards sexism and misogyny – in many congressional races. It is unusual to see a collaboration of this kind – a comparativist who specializes in Russian politics and wrote an award winning book on political legitimacy in Russia (Sperling) and an Americanist usually focused on campaign finance reform and congressional redistricting (Boatright). The book is a tribute to how crossing disciplinary boundaries in political science yields a more compelling and nuanced qualitative and quantitative analysis – one that is more relevant to contemporary politics. The podcast was recorded the day after Democrat Joe Biden selected Kamala Harris as his vice presidential running mate. Sperling and Boatright discuss how stereotyping has already affected the 2020 race. Their trenchant analysis of the code already being deployed by the Trump campaign against Harris in terms of both gender and race should not be missed. Both authors are veterans of the New Books Network and you can hear their earlier interviews with Heath Brown (Boatright, The Deregulatory Moment?) and Amanda Jeanne Swain (Sperling, Sex, Politics, and Putin). Daniella Campos assisted with this podcast. Susan Liebellis associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. She is the author of Democracy, Intelligent Design, and Evolution: Science for Citizenship (Routledge, 2013) and, most recently, “Retreat from the Rule of Law: Locke and the Perils of Stand Your Ground” in the Journal of Politics (July 2020). Email her comments at sliebell@sju.edu or tweet to @SusanLiebell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

64 minAUG 24
Comments
Robert G. Boatright and Valerie Sperling, "Trumping Politics as Usual: Masculinity, Misogyny, and the 2016 Elections" (Oxford UP, 2019)

David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP 2020)

The phenomenon of dehumanization is associated with such atrocities as the 1994 genocide in Rwanda and the Holocaust in World War II. In these and other cases, people are described in ways that imply that they are less than fully human as a prelude to committing extreme forms of violence against them. In On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It (Oxford University Press, 2020), David Livingstone Smith analyzes what dehumanization is, why are we prone to dehumanize, and how we might resist dehumanizing others. On his view, dehumanizing others is a cultural technology that functions to disinhibit us from extreme aggression. It stems from our psychological tendencies to essentialist thinking and to hierarchical thinking, and is sparked by authority figures who rely on these features to characterize other groups as monstrous and dangerous. Livingstone Smith builds on and revises his previous work on this subject and presents it in a form that is both rigorous and accessible to ...

67 minAUG 10
Comments
David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP 2020)

Latest Episodes

Frank Jacob, "Japanese War Crimes during World War II: Atrocity and the Psychology of Collective Violence" (Praeger, 2018)

When you mention Japanese War crimes in World War Two, you’ll often get different responses from different generations.The oldest among us will talk about the Bataan Death March.Younger people, coming of age in the 1990s, will mention the Rape of Nanking or the comfort women forced into service by the Japanese army.Occasionally, someone will mention biological warfare. Frank Jacob has offered a valuable service by surveying Japanese mistreatment of civilians and soldiers comprehensively.His book, Japanese War Crimes during World War II: Atrocity and the Psychology of Collective Violence (Praeger, 2018), is short and doesn’t treat any event or issue in depth.But he offers a lucid and thorough evaluation of the literature and nuggets of additional insight.And he frames it with a thoughtful attempt to explain the conduct about which he is writing. If you’re looking for a deep dive into a particular topic, you’re not the audience Jacob had in mind.But this is a good place to come to grips with the broad picture of Japanese misconduct during the war. Kelly McFall is Professor of History and Director of the Honors Program at Newman University. He’s the author of four modules in the Reacting to the Past series, includingThe Needs of Others: Human Rights, International Organizations and Intervention in Rwanda, 1994, published by W. W. Norton Press. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

65 min2 d ago
Comments
Frank Jacob, "Japanese War Crimes during World War II: Atrocity and the Psychology of Collective Violence" (Praeger, 2018)

Bernice Lerner, "All the Horrors of War: A Jewish Girl, a British Doctor, and the Liberation of Bergen-Belsen" (Johns Hopkins UP, 2020)

One was a teenage Jewish girl, forcibly transported from her home in Hungary to a Nazi concentration camp. The other was a British doctor, whose experiences serving in two world wars could not compare to the horrors he saw at the end of the war. In her book All the Horrors of War: A Jewish Girl, a British Doctor, and the Liberation of Bergen-Belsen (Johns Hopkins UP, 2020), Bernice Lerner describes their lives – one of them her mother, the other one of the people who helped save her – and how they intersected when British forces liberated Bergen-Belsen in April 1945. For Rachel Genuth, her life began to change when Hungarian troops marched into the formerly Romanian town of Sighet in September 1940. From that point onward, her family’s lives and those of her neighbors were increasingly restricted until they were deported to Auschwitz in the spring of 1944. While she struggled to survive, H. L. Glyn Hughes, the deputy director of medical services for the British VIII Corps, participated in the Allied liberation of western Europe, an experience that brought him to the Bergen-Belsen camp, where Rachel had been marched ahead of the Soviet advance to the east. Hughes spent the next several months organizing an unprecedented relief operation, trying desperately to save lives of thousands suffering from starvation and disease. Among them was Rachel, who was subsequently evacuated to Sweden, where she began the slow process of restarting her live after having survived so much death. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

45 min1 w ago
Comments
Bernice Lerner, "All the Horrors of War: A Jewish Girl, a British Doctor, and the Liberation of Bergen-Belsen" (Johns Hopkins UP, 2020)

Eric Weiner, "The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places" (Simon and Schuster, 2016)

Living, as we do, in a time in which a U.S. president anoints himself “a very stable genius”, we are particularly appreciative of Eric Weiner, a former foreign correspondent for NPR who writes with humility and humor, as he brings us along with him on his travels to times and places that produced genius. Beginning with Athens in the Golden age, and ending with Palo Alto in the Silicon age, Weiner steps lightly through a most serious and fascinating topic, aided and supplemented with the latest social science research on creativity and its cultivation. The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places (Simon and Schuster, 2016) is an intellectual odyssey that examines the connection between our surroundings and our most innovative ideas, and has fun doing it. What inspires genius? Why do certain urban settings – and certain historical challenges – foster innovation? Would geniuses like Socrates, Michelangelo, Einstein and Disney have flourished, had they found themselves in other locations and other historical circumstances? Renee Garfinkel, Ph.D. is a psychologist, writer, Middle East television commentator and host of The New Books Network’s Van Leer Jerusalem Series on Ideas. Write her at r.garfinkel@yahoo.com or tweet @embracingwisdom. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

40 min2 w ago
Comments
Eric Weiner, "The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places" (Simon and Schuster, 2016)

William L. Patterson, "We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People" (International Publishers, 2017)

In 2017, We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People, the historic petition authored by William L. Patterson, was published in its third edition. It has been nearly 70 years since Patterson, who passed away in 1980, and Paul Roberson, who passed away in 1976, presented the petition to the United Nations General Assembly, charging the United States government with genocide under the United National Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. William L. Patterson was born in San Francisco on August 27th, 1891. He died in New York City in 1980. Jarvis Tyner, executive vice chair of the Communist Party USA, and active public spokesperson against racism, imperialism and war, joins me to discuss his prologue to the third edition of We Charge Genocide, as well as its history and ongoing relevance today. Jeff Bachmanis a Senior Lecturer in Human Rights at American University’s School of International Service in Washington, DC. He is the au...

40 minSEP 25
Comments
William L. Patterson, "We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People" (International Publishers, 2017)

David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP, 2020)

The Rwandan genocide, the Holocaust, the lynching of African Americans, the colonial slave trade: these are horrific episodes of mass violence spawned from racism and hatred. We like to think that we could never see such evils again--that we would stand up and fight. But something deep in the human psyche--deeper than prejudice itself--leads people to persecute the other: dehumanization, or the human propensity to think of others as less than human. An award-winning author and philosopher, Smith takes an unflinching look at the mechanisms of the mind that encourage us to see someone as less than human. There is something peculiar and horrifying in human psychology that makes us vulnerable to thinking of whole groups of people as subhuman creatures. When governments or other groups stand to gain by exploiting this innate propensity, and know just how to manipulate words and images to trigger it, there is no limit to the violence and hatred that can result. Drawing on numerous historical and contemporary cases and recent psychological research, On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It (Oxford University Press) is the first accessible guide to the phenomenon of dehumanization. Smith walks readers through the psychology of dehumanization, revealing its underlying role in both notorious and lesser-known episodes of violence from history and current events. In particular, he considers the uncomfortable kinship between racism and dehumanization, where beliefs involving race are so often precursors to dehumanization and the horrors that flow from it. On Inhumanityis bracing and vital reading in a world lurching towards authoritarian political regimes, resurgent white nationalism, refugee crises that breed nativist hostility, and fast-spreading racist rhetoric. The book will open your eyes to the pervasive dangers of dehumanization and the prejudices that can too easily take root within us, and resist them before they spread into the wider world. David Livingstone Smith is Professor of Philosophy at the University of New England in Biddeford, Maine. Dr.YakirEnglanderis the National Director of Leadership programs at the Israeli-American Council. He also teaches at the AJR. He is a Fulbright scholar and was a visiting professor of Religion at Northwestern University, the Shalom Hartman Institute and Harvard Divinity School. His books are Sexuality and the Body in New Religious Zionist Discourse (English/Hebrew and The Male Body in Jewish Lithuanian Ultra-Orthodoxy (Hebrew). He can be reached at:Yakir1212englander@gmail.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

65 minSEP 18
Comments
David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP, 2020)

T. P. Kaplan and W. Gruner, "Resisting Persecution: Jews and Their Petitions during the Holocaust" (Berghahn, 2020)

In 20 years of studying the Holocaust, it didn’t occurr to me that German officials might, when petitioned by German Jews or by Germans advocating for German Jews, change their minds.But it turns out that, sometimes, they did. And even when they didn’t, petitioning local, regional or national officials (often all at the same time) could delay deportations or punishments or even function as a form of resistance. Resisting Persecution:Jews and Their Petitions during the Holocaust (Berghahn Books) looks at these petitions from a variety of perspectives.As editors Thomas Kaplan and Wolf Gruner argue, this is a topic that is surprisingly undercovered.And it’s a topic rich in insight and importance.The book shows clearly that petitioning was a common practice. It shows clearly that petitions were sometimes granted.It shows clearly that petitions sometimes led to unexpected and unusual outcomes. And it shows us that studying petitions sometimes opens our eyes to new ways of understanding old topics. The book isn’t the last word on petitions, nor does it pretendto be. Rather, Kaplan and Gruner open up a new avenue of investigation, one that offers researchers topics to work on for many years to come. Thomas Pegelow Kaplan is the Leon Levine Distinguished Professor and Director of the Center for Judaic, Holocaust, and Peace Studies at Appalachian State University. Wolf Gruner is the Shapell-Guerin Chair in Jewish Studies, Professor of History and Founding Director of the USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research at the University of Southern California. Kelly McFall is Professor of History and Director of the Honors Program at Newman University. He’s the author of four modules in the Reacting to the Past series, includingThe Needs of Others: Human Rights, International Organizations and Intervention in Rwanda, 1994, published by W. W. Norton Press. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

65 minSEP 8
Comments
T. P. Kaplan and W. Gruner, "Resisting Persecution: Jews and Their Petitions during the Holocaust" (Berghahn, 2020)

Carolyn J. Dean, "The Moral Witness: Trials and Testimony after Genocide" (Cornell UP, 2019)

The Moral Witness: Trials and Testimony after Genocide (Cornell University Press, 2019) is the first cultural history of the "witness to genocide" in the West. Carolyn J. Dean shows how the witness became a protagonist of twentieth-century moral culture by tracing the emergence of this figure in courtroom battles from the 1920s to the 1960s―covering the Armenian genocide, the Ukrainian pogroms, the Soviet Gulag, and the trial of Adolf Eichmann. In these trials, witness testimonies differentiated the crime of genocide from war crimes and began to form our understanding of modern political and cultural murder. By the turn of the twentieth century, the "witness to genocide" became a pervasive icon of suffering humanity and a symbol of western moral conscience. Dean sheds new light on the recent global focus on survivors' trauma. Only by placing the moral witness in a longer historical trajectory, she demonstrates, can we understand how the stories we tell about survivor testimony have...

37 minSEP 7
Comments
Carolyn J. Dean, "The Moral Witness: Trials and Testimony after Genocide" (Cornell UP, 2019)

Rafael Medoff, "The Jews Should Keep Quiet: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, and the Holocaust" (JPS, 2019)

Like so many Americans, American Jews supported President Roosevelt. They adored him. They believed in him. They idolized him. Perhaps they shouldn’t have. Based on recently discovered documents, The Jews Should Keep Quiet: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, and the Holocaust (Jewish Publication Society) reassesses the hows and whys behind the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration’s fateful policies during the Holocaust. Rafael Medoff delves into difficult truths: With FDR’s consent, the administration deliberately suppressed European immigration far below the limits set by U.S. law. His administration also refused to admit Jewish refugees to the U.S. Virgin Islands, dismissed proposals to use empty Liberty ships returning from Europe to carry refugees, and rejected pleas to drop bombs on the railways leading to Auschwitz, even while American planes were bombing targets only a few miles away—actions that would not have conflicted with the larger goal of winning the war. What motivated FDR? Medoff explores the sensitive question of the president’s private sentiments toward Jews. Unmasking strong parallels between Roosevelt’s statements regarding Jews and Asians, he connects the administration’s policies of excluding Jewish refugees and interning Japanese Americans. The Jews Should Keep Quiet further reveals how FDR’s personal relationship with Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, American Jewry’s foremost leader in the 1930s and 1940s, swayed the U.S. response to the Holocaust. Documenting how Roosevelt and others pressured Rabbi Wise to stifle American Jewish criticism of FDR’s policies, Medoff chronicles how and why the American Jewish community largely fell in line with Wise. Ultimately Medoff weighs the administration’s realistic options for rescue action, which, if taken, would have saved many lives. Rafael Medoff is founding director of the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies and coeditor of the institute’s online Encyclopedia of America’s Response to the Holocaust. Renee Garfinkel, Ph.D. is a Jerusalem-based psychologist, Middle East television commentator, and host of the Van Leer Jerusalem Series on Ideas with Renee Garfinkel Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

60 minAUG 31
Comments
Rafael Medoff, "The Jews Should Keep Quiet: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, and the Holocaust" (JPS, 2019)

Robert G. Boatright and Valerie Sperling, "Trumping Politics as Usual: Masculinity, Misogyny, and the 2016 Elections" (Oxford UP, 2019)

How did the Trump and Hillary Clinton campaigns affect other elections in 2016? How did the use of gender stereotypes and insulting references to women in the presidential campaign influence the way House and Senate candidates campaigned? The 2016 American elections forced scholars and candidates to reassess the role that gender plays in elections. In Trumping Politics as Usual: Masculinity, Misogyny, and the 2016 Elections (Oxford UP, 2019), Robert G. Boatright and Valerie Sperling (professors of political science, Clark University) focus on how gender norms are used to frame – both positively and negatively – the people who run for office. The book interrogates gender and sexism in campaigns (the “gender issue”) and what happens when the media, electorate, and candidates expect to have a clear winner and loser(the “loser” issue). Boatright and Sperling distinguish between the top of the ticket and down ballot elections to tell a story about the impact of the 2016 presidential race on competitive congressional races. They demonstrate how Donald Trump’s candidacy radically altered the nature of the congressional campaigns by making competitive races more consequential for both parties and changing the issues of contention – towards sexism and misogyny – in many congressional races. It is unusual to see a collaboration of this kind – a comparativist who specializes in Russian politics and wrote an award winning book on political legitimacy in Russia (Sperling) and an Americanist usually focused on campaign finance reform and congressional redistricting (Boatright). The book is a tribute to how crossing disciplinary boundaries in political science yields a more compelling and nuanced qualitative and quantitative analysis – one that is more relevant to contemporary politics. The podcast was recorded the day after Democrat Joe Biden selected Kamala Harris as his vice presidential running mate. Sperling and Boatright discuss how stereotyping has already affected the 2020 race. Their trenchant analysis of the code already being deployed by the Trump campaign against Harris in terms of both gender and race should not be missed. Both authors are veterans of the New Books Network and you can hear their earlier interviews with Heath Brown (Boatright, The Deregulatory Moment?) and Amanda Jeanne Swain (Sperling, Sex, Politics, and Putin). Daniella Campos assisted with this podcast. Susan Liebellis associate professor of political science at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. She is the author of Democracy, Intelligent Design, and Evolution: Science for Citizenship (Routledge, 2013) and, most recently, “Retreat from the Rule of Law: Locke and the Perils of Stand Your Ground” in the Journal of Politics (July 2020). Email her comments at sliebell@sju.edu or tweet to @SusanLiebell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

64 minAUG 24
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Robert G. Boatright and Valerie Sperling, "Trumping Politics as Usual: Masculinity, Misogyny, and the 2016 Elections" (Oxford UP, 2019)

David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP 2020)

The phenomenon of dehumanization is associated with such atrocities as the 1994 genocide in Rwanda and the Holocaust in World War II. In these and other cases, people are described in ways that imply that they are less than fully human as a prelude to committing extreme forms of violence against them. In On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It (Oxford University Press, 2020), David Livingstone Smith analyzes what dehumanization is, why are we prone to dehumanize, and how we might resist dehumanizing others. On his view, dehumanizing others is a cultural technology that functions to disinhibit us from extreme aggression. It stems from our psychological tendencies to essentialist thinking and to hierarchical thinking, and is sparked by authority figures who rely on these features to characterize other groups as monstrous and dangerous. Livingstone Smith builds on and revises his previous work on this subject and presents it in a form that is both rigorous and accessible to ...

67 minAUG 10
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David Livingstone Smith, "On Inhumanity: Dehumanization and How to Resist It" (Oxford UP 2020)
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