“Randolph Braham…has made a most significant contribution to the scientific historiography of the Holocaust in general and the tragedy of Hungarian Jewry in particular….”
— Alexander Zvielli, The Jerusalem Post
The Nazis’ Last Victims articulates and historically scrutinizes both the uniqueness and the universality of the Holocaust in Hungary, a topic often minimized in general works on the Holocaust. The result of the 1994 conference at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum on the fiftieth anniversary of the deportation of Hungarian Jewry, this anthology examines the effects on Hungary as the last country to be taken over by the Germans.
The Jewish community in Hungary remained relatively intact throughout most of the Holocaust period until just months before the end of World War II. The Nazis’ Last Victims questions what Hungarian Jews knew of their impending fate and examines the heightened sense of tension and haunting drama in Hungary, where the largest single killing process of the Holocaust period occurred in the shortest amount of time.
The Nazis’ Last Victims covers the experiences of victims, perpetrators, collaborators, rescuers, resisters, and bystanders, as well as memorializers and historiographers of the Holocaust. While providing a basic historical overview of the Holocaust, this collection applies to Hungary the general themes of Holocaust historiography, analyzing traditional antisemitism, anti-Jewish legislation, local collaboration, Jewish responses, ghettoization, deportations, the killing process, and Allied responses.
Reflecting the best of scholarship from a number of different disciplines in Hungary, Israel, and the United States, the contributors present a variety ofand often conflictinganalyses and insights, demonstrating an open and animated exchange of ideas. The contributors utilized archives from Hungary, Israel, and Germany, and some, as survivors of the Holocaust in Hungary, have included their own personal testimony. Through the combination of two vital components of history writingthe analytical and the recollective The Nazis’ Last Victims probes the destruction of the last remnant of European Jewry in the Holocaust. From the book jacket.
“An exciting and most interesting complex report and analysis on the most hideous episode of the most systematic genocide of human history. Professor Randolph Braham, the best expert of the topic and his co-editor and co-authors accomplished an excellent work.”
— Ivan T. Berend, UCLA, President of the International Committee of Historical Sciences
“The Nazis’ Last Victims is far broader than the normal academic monograph on the subject; while it includes historical and historiographical assessments of the period, it also includes eyewitness accounts and poignant remembrances of that ghastly time.”
— Jack Lessenberry, Professor of Journalism, Wayne State University
Randolph L. Braham is distinguished professor emeritus of political science at the City College and the Graduate School and University Center of the City University of New York, where he serves as director of the Rosenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies. He is the author or co-editor of forty-two books. His two-volume The Politics of Genocide: The Holocaust in Hungary (Columbia University Press, 1981) was selected for the National Jewish Book Award in 1981; his The Politics of Genocide: The Holocaust in Hungary, Condensed Edition, also is published by Wayne State University Press in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
Scott Miller is an historian in the Education Department at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.