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Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory [Paperback]

Deborah Lipstadt
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
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Book Description

28 July 1994

The denial of the Holocaust has no more credibility than the assertion that the earth is flat. Yet there are those who insist that the death of six million Jews and other persecuted people in Nazi concentration camps is nothing but a hoax perpetuated by a powerful Zionist conspiracy.

In this first full-scale history of Holocaust denial, Deborah Lipstadt shows how – despite tens of thousands of living witnesses and vast amounts of documentary evidence – this irrational idea has not only continued to gain adherents but has become an internationally organized movement. Lipstadt argues that this chilling attack on the factual record not only threatens Jews but could dramatically alter the way that truth and meaning are transmitted from one generation to another.

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Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory + Telling Lies About Hitler: The Holocaust, History and the David Irving Trial
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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; New Ed edition (28 July 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0452272742
  • ISBN-13: 978-0452272743
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 15 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 273,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Shrill Zionism 23 Aug 2013
By Zero
Lipstadt falls into the trap repeatedly throughout the book of making ad hominem attacks against all Holocaust deniers, a claim which, ironically enough, she constantly accuses the very same deniers of doing. Yes, a lot (and maybe even most) Holocaust deniers are white supremacists who hate Jews, but that doesn't mean this discussion can't be engaged with an academic tone and intellectual honesty. She compares Holocaust deniers to Flat Earthers, which isn't a fair comparison since one topic deals with history and the other is science. Science deals in objectivity, observation, and theorizing. History is subjective and under constant revision, depending on the people writing it.
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26 of 36 people found the following review helpful
By M. D Roberts VINE VOICE
Format:School & Library Binding|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent, much needed book, which combats what is described as a moral and intellectual virus being used to attack the extremely well documented, factual record of the Holocaust in which over six million Jews were murdered by the Nazis.
The book is extremely well written with both compassion and authority. It illustrates that despite the irrefutable evidence and clinical accuracy in which the Holocaust was meticulously documented and in which the genocide of the European Jews was pursued, there are still sources who would dispute that the Holocaust ever occurred or that it has been greatly exaggerated. An attitude which appears to increase in parallel with the present day's rising anti-Semitism.
It is made very clear in this book that very few historical events are as well documented as the Holocaust, yet few if any of these other events are questioned. Indeed, despite other genocides and slaughters having occurred throughout history, (with none having been as well documented as that of the Jews), none receive the denial and hostility afforded the Jewish Holocaust.
On page 22 the book cites a seeming "contradiction" where it outlines many instances where even the Nazi perpetrators of the Holocaust actually admitted the crimes that they committed, whilst a growing group who were not even present at the time claim that the perpetrators were innocent.
The book citing neo-Nazis who once argued that the Holocaust, however horrible, was justified now content that the entire event was a hoax. The latter being more expedient to furthering their cause, where the book alleges attempts are made to "rehabilitate the persecutors and demonise the victims".
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35 of 51 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A dangerous road to start down 29 Oct 1999
By A Customer
I went into this text with preconceptions, having studied at length the reasons behind and story of the Holocaust. It struck me that the Author's purpose was to seek out those eccentric individuals who have made (in some cases a fairly lucrative) living out of denying the holocaust. I must give Lipstadt her due. She points out that the denial of the Holocaust is not and cannot be based on reason. The deniers rely on the ignorance of their readers and highly selective use of evidence to bolster their rather tenuous case.
Why then, am I only giving three stars? The answer lies in what I perceive as an almost manic intolerance of any deviation from her accepted version of the Holocaust. Lipstadt claims that there are many issues that 'Holocaust experts' debate - then seems to limit them to those which start from the assumption six million died, even when this is a highly tendentious figure. Some literature suggests that not all Nazis were as vehemently in favour of the Holocaust as Hitler. Does this lack of unanimity warrant a mention? I think not. There is a disturbing intolerant streak which characterises much of the writing and which vitiates what would otherwise have been a very powerful work. The blanket adoption of extreme restrictions on freedom of speech which Lipstadt seems to advocate is the thin end of a very disturbing wedge, and readers should remember this.
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22 of 34 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
As a former Kindertransportee I participate in Holocaust Education projects. As a psychotherapist I work with first, second and third generation Holocaust survivors. Yet until I read this book I was only aware of the need for Holocaust Education to combat general ignorance and reluctance to know about what happened. Lipstadt makes it very clear that growth of Holocaust revisionism and denial goes far beyond ignorance to threaten the very roots of reason and democracy and attacks the foundations of enlightened human culture.
She defines the difference between history, a rational discipline aiming to uncover and understand events, and revisionism (which she insists is denial), an irrational ideology based on and propagated by the creation of falsifications and distortion of facts. She demonstrates unequivocally how this ideology is based on a master-race philosophy and vitriolic hatred of Jews, Communists, etc. as inferior and conspiring against the master-race. Her account of the development of 'revisionism ' in response to WWI and the main characters that revived and extended it after WWII illustrates deniers' projection into 'the Jews' of their own disowned elements resulting in paranoid fear of them.
So powerful is the appeal of their irrational ideology that the deniers believe their own fabrications and live in a 'wonderland of mythology'. Jews, as the embodiment of moral values and truth, present a threat to their 'wonderland' and must be anihilated to 'purify' the master-race. Furthermore, the powerful appeal of mythology is a part of human make-up. Holocaust revisionists and deniers trade on this to sow the seeds of doubt with their perverted propaganda and make converts to their irrational fabrications.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars A Bad Precedent Is Being Set Here.
This book is a good example of how true freedom of speech and the right to debate are being suppressed. Read more
Published 16 months ago by man
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic, groundbreaking study
In this book the author gives an excellent, informative and scholarly overview of the disturbing and dangerous phenomenon of Holocaust denial. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Nigel Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars Denying the Holocaust
first became aware some years ago that there are people who do not believe the Holocaust happened and ever since I have been meaning to read this book. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Damaskcat
5.0 out of 5 stars A great defense of History
A great history book, a great defense of history as a scientific discipline and a great defense of the truth. Well written,very well referenced and very informative. Read more
Published on 22 Nov 2011 by Abraham21
4.0 out of 5 stars Denying the Holocaust
This book was the start of a cause celebre because David Irving chose to sue Deborah Lipstadt and her publisher for libel regarding comments made about him in the book. Read more
Published on 18 Sep 2011 by Bacchus
1.0 out of 5 stars Book of Lies
There was absolutely ZERO attempt in this work to refute the facts uncovered by the likes of Germar Rudolf,, Carl Mattogno, Ernst Zuendel and many, many others. Read more
Published on 4 April 2009 by Calgacus
5.0 out of 5 stars Give Lipstadt her due!
This book is super. It details the history of holocaust denial including modern-day neo-nazism. It shows the Holocaust deniers for what the really are, and how under no... Read more
Published on 3 Oct 2007 by Nathan
4.0 out of 5 stars A better informed reader!
I came to this book having read Lively's book called the Pink Swastika,

which put a good case for believing that the real perpetrators of the Shoah

were not... Read more
Published on 10 July 2006 by Mr. S. R. Hammett
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing and disturbing
So this is what the court case was all about. This is an intriguing and disturbing analysis of the deeply worrying phenomenon of Holocaust denial. A book everyone should read.
Published on 18 April 2000
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