The Eichmann Trial
Eichmann listens as he is sentenced to death by the court.
Israel Government Press Office (Photo #65289)
In 1961, the District Court of Jerusalem tried Adolf Eichmann on fifteen separate counts, including crimes against the Jewish people, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and membership in a hostile organization. The trial, the first one in history to be videotaped, aroused interest world-wide, bringing Nazi atrocities to the forefront of world news, and prompting international debates regarding the legality of the trial. The court rejected the preliminary arguments raised concerning its own competence and jurisdiction in trying Eichmann, and after a trial lasting eight months, found him guilty on all counts and sentenced him to death. He was executed by hanging on June 1, 1962, and his ashes were spread at sea.
The following bibliography was compiled to guide readers to materials on the Eichmann Trial that are in the Library’s collection. It is not meant to be exhaustive. Annotations are provided to help the user determine the item’s focus, and call numbers for the Museum’s Library are given in parentheses following each citation. Those unable to visit might be able to find these works in a nearby public library or acquire them through interlibrary loan. Follow the “Find in a library near you” link in each citation and enter your zip code at the Open WorldCat search screen. The results of that search indicate all libraries in your area that own that particular title. Talk to your local librarian for assistance.
Background Information ↑
Bach, Gabriel. “Eichmann Trial.” In Encyclopedia of the Holocaust, edited by Israel Gutman, 429-432. New York: Macmillan, 1990. (Reference D 804.25 .E527 1990 v.2) [Find in a library near you]
An overview of Eichmann’s trial in Israel. Reviews the elements of the indictment against Eichmann and the preliminary arguments made by the defense regarding the legality of the trial and the jurisdiction of the court. Briefly describes the judges’ rulings and the trial’s outcome, along with the public’s response to the trial.
Braham, Randolph L. The Eichmann Case: A Source Book. New York: World Federation of Hungarian Jews, 1969. (Reference Z 6464 .W33 B73 1969) [Find in a library near you]
An extensive, unannotated list of 1,173 books and articles about Adolf Eichmann, his life, his pursuit and capture, and various aspects of the Trial. Organized by subject with a name index.
Cesarani, David. Becoming Eichmann: Rethinking the Life, Crimes, and Trial of a “Desk Murderer.” Cambridge, MA: Da Capo Press, 2006. (DD 247 .E5 C47 2006) [Find in a library near you]
Biography of Eichmann which attempts to correct misconceptions of the man and his life put forth by previous books and articles about him. Retraces Eichmann’s career and work as a Nazi bureaucrat and recreates his 1961 trial in Jerusalem. Includes photographs, endnotes, and an extensive bibliography.
Wiesenthal, Simon. “Eichmann the Elusive.” In The Murderers Among Us: The Simon Wiesenthal Memoirs, 96-128. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1967. (D 804 .G4 W47 1967) [Find in a library near you]
Recounts the author’s post-war pursuit of Adolf Eichmann and briefly describes his reactions to and impressions of Eichmann’s trial.
Wiesenthal, Simon. Justice Not Vengeance: Recollections. New York: Grove Wiedenfeld, 1989. (D 804 .G4 W4313 1989) [Find in a library near you]
An autobiography recounting the author’s wartime experiences, as well as his post-war pursuits of various Nazis, most notably Adolf Eichmann. See particularly pages 66-79.
Yahil, Leni. “Eichmann, Adolf.” In Encyclopedia of the Holocaust, edited by Israel Gutman, 426-429. New York: MacMillan, 1990. (Reference D 804.25 .E527 1990 v.2) [Find in a library near you]
Details Eichmann’s role in the “Final Solution” to the Jewish question, beginning with his work in the central office of the SD to his direct role in the deportation and extermination of Hungarian Jews. Also briefly describes Eichmann’s trial in Jerusalem.
Zentner, Christian, and Friedemann Bedürftig, editors. “Eichmann, Adolf.” In Encyclopedia of the Third Reich, 226. New York: Macmillan, 1991. (Reference DD 256.5 .G763 1991 v.1) [Find in a library near you]
Briefly describes Eichmann’s early life and his work as the architect of the “Final Solution” to the Jewish question.
The Eichmann Trial ↑
Arendt, Hannah. Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil. New York: Viking Press, 1963. (D 810 .J4 A746 1963) [Find in a library near you]
A controversial description and analysis of Adolf Eichmann’s crimes and trial. Also examines the legality and morality of Israel’s capture, trial, and execution of Eichmann.
Brager, Bruce L. The Trial of Adolf Eichmann: The Holocaust on Trial. San Diego: Lucent Books, 1999. (KMK 44 .E33 B73 1999) [Find in a library near you]
A brief account of the capture and trial of Adolf Eichmann. Written for young adults and supplemented with many illustrations.
Cohen, Akiba A., et al. The Holocaust and the Press: Nazi War Crimes Trials in Germany and Israel. Cresskill, NJ: Hampton Press, 2002. (D 804.3 C62 2002) [Find in a library near you]
A detailed statistical analysis of how four different war crimes trials -- the Nuremberg Trials, the Eichmann Trial, the Auschwitz Trial, and the Demjanjuk Trial -- were covered in German and Israeli newspapers. Offers both quantitative and qualitative analyses, examining the extent of the coverage and the themes that emerged. Includes numerous data tables, an explanatory appendix, a lengthy bibliography and an index.
Deutsch, Akiva W. The Eichmann Trial in the Eyes of Israeli Youngsters: Opinions, Attitudes, and Impact. Ramat-Gan, [Israel]: Bar-Ilan University, 1974. (KMK 44 .E33 D48 1974) [Find in a library near you]
Investigation into and analysis of the reactions and attitudes of Israeli youth to the complex issues surrounding the Eichmann Trial. Replete with statistical tables.
Glock, Charles Y., Gertrude J. Selznick, and Joe L. Spaeth. The Apathetic Majority: A Study Based on Public Responses to the Eichmann Trial. New York: Harper & Row, 1970. (KF 224 .E36 .G55 1970) [Find in a library near you]
Analyzes a study done in Oakland, California to test the public’s knowledge of the Holocaust in general and the Eichmann Trial specifically. Includes tables showing responses to questions about Eichmann and the trial, categorized by the income, knowledge, education, and race of the respondents.
Gollancz, Victor. The Case of Adolf Eichmann. London: V. Gollancz, 1961. (DD 247 .E5 G65 1961) [Find in a library near you]
Protests both the legality and morality of the application of the death penalty to Adolf Eichmann and the legality of the trial itself.
Gouri, Haim. Facing the Glass Booth: The Jerusalem Trial of Adolf Eichmann. Detroit, MI: Wayne State University Press, 2004. (KMK 44 .E33 G6813 2004) [Find in a library near you]
Day-by-day account of the trial by a journalist who covered the proceedings for an Israeli newspaper. Provides descriptions of witness testimony and reactions to issues raised by the court case.
Hausner, Gideon. 6,000,000 Accusers, Israel’s Case Against Eichmann: The Opening Speech and Legal Argument of Mr. Gideon Hausner, Attorney-General. [Jerusalem]: Jerusalem Post, 1961. (KMK 44 .E33 H37 1961) [Find in a library near you]
The complete opening statements of the Eichmann Trial, translated into English. Includes the indictment against Eichmann, Attorney General Gideon Hausner’s opening statement, Eichmann’s attorney’s objections, and the Court’s ruling.
Hausner, Gideon. Justice in Jerusalem. [S.l.]: Herzl Press, 1977. (KMK 44 .E33 H38 1977) [Find in a library near you]
An account of the case against Eichmann by the main prosecutor in the trial. Also chronicles the Nazi’s “Final Solution,” particularly Eichmann’s role in it, and expresses the author’s personal views on the Holocaust.
Lang, Jochen von, and Claus Sibyll, editors. Eichmann Interrogated: Transcripts from the Archives of the Israeli Police. New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1983. (DD 247 .E5 A5 1983) [Find in a library near you]
The full transcript of Adolf Eichmann’s account of his life and his actions during World War II, recounted to Captain Avner Less of the Israeli Police. Details Eichmann’s early Nazi career and his complicity in the murder of thousands of Jews. Supplemented by notes from the editor citing statistics and correcting the various omissions and mistakes in Eichmann’s account. The Library also has an edition in German under the title, Das Eichmann-Protokoll: Tonbandaufzeichnungen der israelischen Verhöre.
Mulisch, Harry. Criminal case 40/61, the Trial of Adolf Eichmann: An Eyewitness Account. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2005. (DD 247 .E5 M813 2005) [Find in a library near you]
An eyewitness account of the Eichmann trial proceedings based on detailed diary entries by the author and first published as a series of articles in a Dutch newspaper. Includes observations made during discussions with participants at the trial. Originally published in German as Strafsache 40/61: eine Reportage über den Eichmann-Prozess.
Murray, Michael Patrick. “A Study in Public International Law: Comparing the Trial of Adolf Eichmann in Jerusalem with the Trial of the Major German War Criminals at Nuremberg.” S.J.D. diss., George Washington University, 1973. (JX 5434 .M87 1973) [Find in a library near you]
A detailed comparison of the Eichmann and Nuremberg Trials to determine if the Eichmann case failed or succeeded in serving the rule of law. Examines the participants and perspectives involved within juridical, political, and social contexts.
Musmanno, Michael A. The Eichmann Kommandos. Philadelphia: Macrae Smith, 1961. (KZ 1179 .E36 M875 1961) [Find in a library near you]
An account of the trials of Adolf Eichmann’s subordinates, who were responsible for the deaths of at least one million people. Justifies the trying of war criminals and the judgments of the courts. Written by one of the judges.
Papadatos, Peter. The Eichmann Trial. New York: Frederick A. Praeger, 1964. (D 804 .G43 E57 1964) [Find in a library near you]
An analysis of the legal issues involved in the Eichmann Trial, written by the official observer for the International Commission of Jurists. Recounts the story of Eichmann’s arrest, explores the legal bases of the trial, considers questions of procedure, and examines the consequences of the proceedings. Includes a full printing of the indictment, notes, and a bibliography.
Pearlman, Moshe. The Capture and Trial of Adolf Eichmann. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1963. (KMK 44 .E33 P33 1963) [Find in a library near you]
A narrative account of the capture and trial of Adolf Eichmann. Recounts in great detail operations of the Israeli operatives who captured Eichmann, as well as the ensuing diplomatic battle and trial.
Robinson, Jacob. And the Crooked Shall be Made Straight: The Eichmann Trial, the Jewish Catastrophe, and Hannah Arendt’s Narrative. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society of America, 1965. (KMK 44 .E33 R63 1965) [Find in a library near you]
A point-by-point refutation of Hannah Arendt’s book, Eichmann in Jerusalem, that emphasized Eichmann’s humanity and maintained his actions were the result of his childhood and environment. Includes detailed notes, a lengthy bibliography, and an index.
Russell of Liverpool, Edward Frederick Langley Russell. The Record: The Trial of Adolf Eichmann for His Crimes Against the Jewish People and Against Humanity. New York: Knopf, 1963. (KMK44.E33 R87 1963) [Find in a library near you]
Summarizes the significant elements in the Eichmann Trial. Examines the legal implications of the trial while reassessing the part played by Eichmann in the “Final Solution.” Includes an appendix that briefly reviews the history of the defense of “superior orders.”
Shapira, Anita. “The Eichmann Trial: Changing Perspectives.” In After Eichmann: Collective Memory and the Holocaust Since 1961, edited by David Cesarani. New York: Routledge, 2005. (D 804.348 .A38 2005) [Find in a library near you]
Examines the various interpretations of the Eichmann trial as a symbolic event, with particular emphasis on the works of Hannah Arendt and Haim Gouri.
State of Israel Ministry of Justice. The Trial of Adolf Eichmann: Record of Proceedings in the District Court of Jerusalem. Jerusalem: Trust for the Publication of the Proceedings of the Eichmann Trial, in cooperation with the Israel State Archives and Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority, 1992-1995. (KMK 44 .E33 E33 1992) [Find in a library near you]
Volumes 1-5 contain the complete transcript of the trial. Volume 6 provides an annotated list of exhibits submitted at trial, a glossary, and an index to the five volumes of the proceedings. Volumes 7-8 supply the complete transcripts (in German) of Eichmann’s interviews with the Israeli police prior to the trial in Jerusalem. Volume 9 includes the microfiche copies of the exhibits presented by the prosecution and defense.
Yablonka, Hanna. The State of Israel vs. Adolf Eichmann. New York: Schocken Books, 2004. (KMK 44 .E33 Y3313 2004) [Find in a library near you]
Uses accounts of personal and media reaction to the Eichmann trial to show how the case affected the lives of Holocaust survivors in Israel. Defines the Eichmann trial as a seminal event in Israeli history.
Grosse, Christina. Der Eichmann-Prozess zwischen Recht und Politik. Frankfurt am Main: P. Lang, 1995. (KMK 44 .E33 G76 1995) [Find in a library near you]
An analysis of the political and judicial issues which surrounded the Eichmann trial. Discusses the admissibility of interviews Eichmann gave in exile to Nazi sympathizers, questions how his legal defense was financed, and examines the idea of extraditing Eichmann to Germany to stand trial there.
Lamm, Hans. Der Eichmann-Prozess in der deutschen öffentlichen Meinung: eine Dokumentensammlung. Frankfurt am Main: Ner-Tamid-Verlag, 1961. (KMK 44 .E33 E346 1961) [Find in a library near you]
A collection of German newspaper articles and statements made to the media by various German public officials in reaction to the Eichmann trial.
Nellessen, Bernd. Der Prozess von Jerusalem: ein Dokument. Düsseldorf: Econ, 1964. (KMK 44 .E33 E336 1964) [Find in a library near you]
Selections from the Eichmann trial based on the simultaneous translations offered during the trial. Includes the indictment, the prosecutor’s opening statement, the verdict, and a journalist’s account of Eichmann’s execution.
Sima, Miron. Angesichts des traurigen Symbols: Portrait eines Gerichtes, Zeichnungen aus dem Eichmann-Prozess. Jerusalem: Israel Universities Press, 1969. (KMK 44 .E33 S56 1969) [Find in a library near you]
A collection of drawings depicting the proceedings at the Eichmann trial, including sketches of the defendant, the judges, Eichmann’s counsel, the prosecution team, and numerous witnesses. Supplements the images with quotations from the trial, and includes short biographies of the witnesses whose likenesses are included in the collection.
Film and Video ↑
Adolf Eichmann: Hitler’s Master of Death [videorecording]. New York: A&E Home Video, 1997. (Video Collection) [Find in a library near you]
Details Eichmann’s early life and his rise to SS lieutenant colonel and architect of the “Final Solution.” Employs a mix of historical photos, film clips, and exclusive interviews. Includes extensive footage of Eichmann’s trial in 1961.
The Trial of Adolf Eichmann [videorecording]. Alexandria, VA: PBS Home Video, 1997. (Video Collection) [Find in a library near you]
A documentary containing rare videotape of the trial and exclusive interviews with courtroom witnesses, prosecutors and others. Hosted by David Brinkley.
Witness to the Holocaust: The Trial of Adolf Eichmann [videorecording]. Irvine, CA: Lorimar Home Video, 1987. (Video Collection) [Find in a library near you]
Relies almost exclusively on actual trial footage and extensive testimony and evidence to reveal Eichmann’s responsibility in the “Final Solution” of the Jewish question. Part of the Witness to the Holocaust series.
Museum Web Resources ↑
Additional Resources ↑
Ask at the reference desk to see the subject file labeled “Eichmann, Adolf” containing newspaper and periodical articles.
To search library catalogs or other electronic search tools for materials on Adolf Eichmann or the Eichmann Trial, use the following Library of Congress subject headings to retrieve the most relevant citations:
- Eichmann, Adolf, 1906-1962
- Eichmann, Adolf, 1906-1962--Trials, litigation, etc.
For additional information about rescue efforts and organizations, consult the “War Crimes Trials” section of the Library’s collection of Web Links.
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