Exhibition installed at the Greensboro Historical Museum in Greensboro, North Carolina. Greensboro Historical Museum, Greensboro, NC
Exhibition installed at the Denver Public Library in Colorado. Denver Public Library, Denver, CO
Exhibition installed at The National World War II Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana. The National World War II Museum, New Orleans, LA
Exhibition installed at the Indian Trails Public Library District in Wheeling, Illinois. Indian Trails Public Library District, Wheeling, IL
On May 10, 1933, university students across Nazi Germany burned thousands of books in an ominous “cleansing” of the “un-German spirit” from German culture. Writings by scores of German and foreign authors, including Helen Keller, Ernest Hemingway, and Sigmund Freud, were consumed in spectacularly staged bonfires. Americans quickly condemned the events as hostile to the spirit of democracy and the freedom of expression.
Fighting the Fires of Hate: America and the Nazi Book Burnings explores how the book burnings became a potent symbol in America’s battle against Nazism and why they continue to resonate with the public—in film, literature, and political discourse—to this day.