Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory Hardcover – 6 Aug 1993
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Strong medicine... An antidote to the moral and intellectual virus that has spread from the crackpot fringe to the very heart of public discourse in the media, the courts and the world's universities. (Los Angeles Times)
Important and impassioned... it illuminates with skill and clarity, not only the peculiarly disturbing world of the Holocaust deniers, but also the methods they have used to distort history, the motives that have driven them to do so, and the vulnerabilities of our educational systems, our culture, and ourselves that have made so many in our society ready to listen to them. (New York Times Book Review) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
DEBORAH LIPSTADT is an American historian, best known as author of the books "Denying the Holocaust," "History on Trial: My Day in Court with a Holocaust Denier," and "The Eichmann Trial." Lipstadt was a consultant to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and she was appointed by Bill Clinton to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council, serving two terms. She is currently the Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish History and Holocaust Studies at Emory University. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Through reading about the trial, I discovered that Denying the Holocaust was out of print at the time and had it not been for the Irving's litigation would possibly have remained so.
I had for a long time been aware that some people deny that 6 million Jews died during the Holocaust but until I started reading about the subject, the very existence of concentration camps and the overtly anti-Semitic policies of the Nazi state were sufficient to mark it out for me as a particularly nasty episode in history, with or without the huge death toll. Even if the Holocaust deniers are right about gas chambers (and I have no reason to think they are), the moral opprobrium over the Nazis remains insurmountable.
In Denying the Holocaust, Lipstadt traces the development of denial literature from crude pamphlets to pseudo-scholastic publications that give the impression of having been considered by serious academic historians. In fact, Lipstadt says that the literature is littered with obfuscation, distortion, misquotation and mistranslation designed to cast doubt on what you would read in most history books on this subject.
The provenance of the literature was shown to have emanated from writers who were very much in league with Far right political parties rather than from academics who were pursuing any kind of objective truth about the subject.Read more ›
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.
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".Read more ›
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.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Ripped to pieces on sites such as codoh dot com, inconvenienthistory dot com and holocausthandbooks dot comPublished 8 months ago by Ellison J. Peterson
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... Read morePublished on 23 Aug. 2013 by Zero
In this book the author gives an excellent, informative and scholarly overview of the disturbing and dangerous phenomenon of Holocaust denial. Read morePublished on 18 Feb. 2013 by Phantom Book-Geek of Old Cardiff Town
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 morePublished on 22 Jan. 2013 by Damaskcat
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 morePublished on 22 Nov. 2011 by Abraham21
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 morePublished on 4 April 2009 by Wulfgar
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 morePublished on 3 Oct. 2007 by Nathan
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
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