Six of the seven books we'll read this quarter (Fogelman: Conscience is missing)

Readings in Holocaust History
(UCSB Hist 133Q), by Professor Harold Marcuse (homepage)
page created Jan. 4, 2004; last update: Nov. 15, 2004

search my entire site

NOTE January 2006: This page has been superceded by the 2006 Hist 133q website.

(at top)

Course history and description
(w/ links to previous syllabi)

Schedule of Topics
with additional links

My other courses
Hist 2c, Hist 4c, Hist 33D,
Hist 133C
, Hist 133P

Announcements (old announcements move to bottom)

  • May 8, 2004: some links to other, similar courses:
    Research Seminar in History and Theory (by Craig Cameron, Old Dominion University [Norfalk, VA], Spr. 04) link
  • Mar. 11, 2004: The final papers are due Wed., March 17, at noon in my office. The absolute final deadline for students with special arrangements is Friday, March 19, at noon. Thanks for a great course!
  • Feb. 25: The books recommended in class were:
    • Laura Hein & Mark Selden (eds.), Censoring History: Citizenship and Memory in Japan, Germany, and the United States (Armonk: ME Sharpe, 2000). UCSB: D413.5.C43 2000; also available on-line.
    • James W. Loewen, Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong (New York: New Press, 1995; Simon & Shuster 1996), UCSB E175.85.L64 1995.
    • Deborah Lipstadt, Denying the Holocaust (NY/London: Penguin, 1995).
Roseman, Past in Hiding
Friedlander, Origins of Nazi Genocide (used)
Müller, Eyewitness Auschwitz (used)
Appleman-Jurman, My Story
Fogelman, Conscience and Courage
Shermer & Grobman, Denying History
Langer, 100 Little Hitlers
(4u, fetch)

Course Description and History (back to top)

Hist 133Q, "Readings in Holocaust History," is one of my favorite courses to teach, because we read and discuss issues at great depth in each meeting and over the course of the term. I taught it first in 1998, twice in 1999, then again in 2001 and 2004 (see the syllabi: 1998, 1999 winter, 1999 fall, 2001, 2004).
Basically, in this seminar of about 15 students, we read a book a week (long or thematically complex books are spread over 2 weeks). Each week teams of 2 or 3 students prepare background material and lead the discussion, while other students either write a 2-page essay on a guiding question, or formulate 6-10 questions of their own.
Class time is almost completely devoted to discussion, with the discussion leaders or professor presenting background material as necessary. (Prior to enrolling, all students should already have substantial knowledge of Holocaust history--completion of or parallel enrollment in one of my other courses is normally required.)
Each student (or team) also prepares a more substantial paper on their book or topic.
Each time I offer the course I keep some of the students' favorites from the previous time, and choose a theme to guide the rest of the selection.

  • 1998. The first time I picked 9 of what I consider superior introductory books on the Holocaust, each paired with a scholarly essay: Keneally's Schindler's List (with movie viewing), Sebastian Haffner on Hitler; Michael Burleigh on Euthanasia; Browning's Ordinary Men; Auschwitz commandant Rudolf Höss's memoir; Judith Isaacson's memoir of a female survivor's experience, Seed of Sarah; Art Spiegelman's Maus; Mel Mermelstein's anti-denial Auschwitz memoir; and Anne Frank's diary. (see 1998 syllabus)
  • 1999-1. For the second offering I chose Teaching the Holocaust as the theme, and started with Anne Frank's diary and Elie Wiesel's Night; then Isaacson and Browning again; followed by a new Hitler book (by Gerald Fleming); Robert Abzug's commentated source collection America Views the Holocaust; Eva Fogelman's book about rescuers; Deborah Lipstadt's scholarly work on Holocaust denial; and a collection of essays about using Anne Frank's diary in the classroom. I didn't assign the scholarly essays to everyone this time, but helped the presenting teams to find appropriate background readings. Instead, I started using the guiding questions for the rest of the class, and finishing up the readings with a more challenging book. (see winter 1999 syllabus)
  • 1999-2. Guilt and Responsibility for the theme of the third offering. Readings started with Abzug's source collection on the US and the Holocaust; Alfon's Heck's Burden of Hitler's Legacy; Proctor's Racial Hygiene; Gitta Sereny's biography of Treblinka commandant Stangl; Primo Levi's Survival in Auschwitz; Fogelman's Conscience and Courage; a visit by Holocaust survivor Nina Morecki; and finally Isaacson's Seed of Sarah. (see fall 1999 syllabus)
  • 2001. After a two-year break I wanted to read some great new survivor memoirs that had been published, so I chose the Range of Victims' Experiences as the theme in 2001. We began with the memoir of afro-German Hans Massaquoi; continued with Melissa Müller's biography of Anne Frank; Dawid Sierakowiak's Lodz diary; Alicia Appleman-Jurman's memoir again; a visit by Nina Morecki; Primo Levi's memoir again; followed by Isaacson's memoir (a perennial favorite); Auschwitz Sonderkommando Filip Müller's memoir; and concluded with Australian anthropologist Inga Clendinnen's reflections on Holocaust historiography Reading the Holocaust. (see 2001syllabus; my fall 2001 Hist 133D website contains links on these books)
  • 2004. After another long break, in 2004 I chose Histories and Memories as the theme, beginning with Mark Roseman's Past in Hiding; H. Friedlander's book on Euthanasia; Müller's sonderkommando memoir; Appleman-Jurman's Story; Fogelman on rescuers again (also a perennial favorite, because students like its positive stories); Shermer and Grobman's new book on denial; and finally Elinor Langer's 100 Little Hitlers (Langer had presented her book on the UCSB campus the preceding quarter). (see 2004 syllabus)
    note after the course: I think the student-led discussions didn't work as well this year, so I think next time I'll go back to leading the first hour myself.

Schedule of weekly topics (back to top)

2 & 3: Roseman, Past in Hiding (sample essay)
4: Friedlander, Origins of Final Solution
5: Müller, Eyewitness Auschwitz (sample questions, sample essay from 2001)
6: Alicia Appleman-Jurman, My Story (2 sets of sample questions; book synopsis on Alicia's website)
7: Eva Fogelman, Conscience and Courage (Podgorska's story at MOT)
8: visit by Nina and Carol Morecki, and Casey Roberts (Nina's story on Oral History Project homepage)
9: Grobman and Shermer, Denying History (URL of review in Denier's journal JHR:
10: Elinor Langer: 100 Little Hitlers (

Old Announcements (back to top)
  • NOTE 12/7/03: Here is the 2001 syllabus. I will be uploading a new syllabus in early January 2004.
    The reading list for Winter 2004 will be:
    Mark Roseman, Past in Hiding, ISBN: 031242065X (hardcover $10 including shipping at B&N link)
    Henry Friedlander, Origins of Nazi Genocide, ISBN: 0807846759
    Filip Müller, Eyewitness Auschwitz, ISBN: 1566632714
    Alicia Appleman-Jurman, My Story, isbn: 0553282182 (her website)
    Eva Fogelman, Conscience and Courage, ISBN: 0385420285
    Michael Shermer, Alex Grobman, Denying History, ISBN: 0520234693
    Elinor Langer, 100 Little Hitlers, ISBN: 0805050981
  • Dec. 23, 2003: draft 2004 syllabus available [1/7/04: now final version]
  • Jan 4: Please let me know as soon as possible if you have trouble purchasing the class books ( You can save a substantial amount by purchasing them on-line or used. Here are some on-line services to check prices, delivery times, and availability: bookfinder4u (includes shipping price & info),; (may be cheaper: free shipping when grouping new books).
  • Jan. 7: Final version of the syllabus is available (link), as is the "Leading Discussion" handout (link)
  • Jan. 15: sample essay on Roseman added--this is a model of how to write one of these, using a thesis supported by evidence (link)
  • Feb 5: Several students have asked what makes the weekly questions "good." I've added a sample on Eyewitness Auschwitz (link). Note that they tend to be issues on which different opinions are possible, and for which different text passages can be used to support different opinions.
  • Feb. 5: For next week's book, you can also check the book synopsis on Alicia's website.
  • Feb. 5: For a discussion of the anecdote about the female dancer who shot a guard in the undressing room in Auschwitz-Birkenau, see: Lawrence Langer, Versions of Survival: The Holocaust and the Human Spirit (Albany: SUNY, 1982), 43 [UCSB: PN56.H55 L3]. David Hackett, The Buchenwald Report (Boulder: Westview, 1995), appendix anecdote 159, includes a version of this incident by the 15-year-old Czech survivor Janda Weiss, who arrived at Auschwitz on May 20, 1944. This version was recorded in late April 1945, before the end of the war.
  • Feb. 12: more examples of work added: 2 sets of questions on Alicia; a final paper on the Diary of Anne Frank from 2001 (link).
  • Feb. 12: Nina and Carol Morecki may be coming on Mar. 3, not Feb. 25. I'll let you know as soon as I can confirm.
  • Feb. 17: Nina and Carol will indeed be coming on March 3. The reading for that day will be on my UCSB Holocaust Oral History Project website (link). The two most relevant documents are Nina's story from 1939 to 1945, and from 1945 to 2002. (please excuse the random dead links.)
  • Feb. 18: Some links about rescuers are available: Stefania Podgorska in her own words; there is also a film about her;
  • Feb. 23: YIKES! Sorry I didn't think to update the site sooner, BUT: Nina Morecki and her daughter won't be able to come to SB until 3/3, so we will read Grobman/Shermer as scheduled on the syllabus. Since those of you who were absent will be starting late, definitely try to read pp. 123-259 first. Of course I'll be lenient on the essay/question due date, but DO be prepared for class!
  • Feb. 23: links for March 3: Nina's story 1939-45, 1945-2002. For an impression of the trip I (Prof. Marcuse) took to Lvov with Nina and Carol in 1999, skim these first pages of my travel journal, and these photographs.
  • Feb. 24: Juan and Rachael pointed out that the IHR (the denier journal) published a review of Grobman/Shermer in Jan. 2001 (
  • Feb. 25: Two talks are coming up. If you have missed discussions or assignments, I'll give 4pts extra credit for attendance, IF you submit a paragraph summarizing Krell or (for Friday) any panelist's main points:
      Dr. Robert Krell (Psychiatrist, Author, Child Survivor)
      Thursday, February 26 / 5:00 P.M. / FREE
      Bronfman Family Jewish Community Center, 524 Chapala Street, Santa Barbara
      Robert Krell survived the Holocaust as a hidden child in Holland. Eventually he became a noted child psychiatrist recognized, in particular, for his scholarly research and public lectures on the psychological trauma in Holocaust survivors and their children. He co-authored an updated, translated edition of Judith Hemmendinger Feist's book, The Children of Buchenwald: Child Survivors and Their Post-War Lives (2000) which recounts the story of the 426 young survivors sent from Buchenwald to France.
    • Feb. 27, Friday, 2-4pm, 6020 HSSB: panel discussion "Survivors of Trauma"

author: H. Marcuse
visitors since Jan. 5, 2004

This counter counts each computer only once each day, no matter how many hits come from it.

(back to top)

20 on Jan. 7, 2004, 11pm
39 on Jan. 15, noon [2/day]
109 on Feb. 5, 11am [3.3/day]
136 on Feb. 12, 10pm [5/day]

148 on Feb. 17, 10am [2.4/day]
156 on Feb. 18, 1 pm
172 on Feb. 23, 11pm [3/day]
181 on Feb. 24, 11pm
187 on Feb. 25, 11pm
196 on Feb. 26, 11pm [8/day]
312 on Mar. 11, 10am [7/day]
327 on Mar. 13,2004, 3pm

4.7 hits/day during quarter

454 on May 8, 2004, 1pm
2.3 hits/day 2 months since quarter
518 on July 9, 2004 (1/day)
579 on 9/16/04 (1/day)
600 on 10/8/04 (1/day)
664 on 11/15/04 (1.8/day)

[moved to 2006 website]