2004–05 Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies Fellow Dr. Hans Safrian
Dr. Hans Safrian received his Ph.D. in history from the University of Vienna in Austria and his Master’s degree in history and German literature from the Free University in Berlin, Germany. During his fellowship at the Museum, Dr. Safrian was a Lecturer at the University of Vienna. For his Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies Fellowship, he conducted research for his project “The Transition from Voluntary Aryanizations to Compulsory Aryanizations.”
Dr. Safrian has held a number of prestigious appointments that have advanced research and thinking about the Holocaust. He served as a Research Historian on the well-known exhibition, “War of Extermination: Crimes of the German Wehrmacht, 1941-1944” an exhibition of historic photographs and other documentation that challenged the widely held notion that soldiers in the German army were not involved in Nazi crimes. As Team Leader on the International Commission of Experts: Switzerland-Second World War, Dr. Safrian worked collaboratively with other renowned scholars to document Switzerland’s role during the Holocaust. He has also served as Research Historian on the Historical Commission of the Republic of Austria and Lecturer at the University of Vienna and at the University of Innsbruck. Dr. Safrian was the 1996-1997 Pearl Resnick Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. His publications include Die Eichmann-Maenner (Europa Verlag, 1993), which won the Bruno Kreisky Foundation Book Prize in History and Politics, and Expulsion and Extermination: The Fate of Austrian Jews, 1938-1945 (Vienna, 1994) as well as dozens of scholarly articles and book chapters.
During his fellowship at the Center, Dr. Safrian researched the development of Nazi policies relating to the compulsory Aryanization of Jewish property in 1938. Through his research he gained a more nuanced understanding of the politics of “Aryanization” of Jewish property by studying the different developments in Germany and Austria and the various proposals of specific officials.