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Professor Peter Longerich

Dr. Peter Longerich
2003-2004 J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Senior Scholar-in-Residence

"Heinrich Himmler: A Biography"

Professional Background

Professor Peter Longerich received a Ph.D. in history and an M.A. in history and sociology from the University of Munich. During his fellowship at the Museum, he was Professor of Modern GermanDr History at Royal Holloway, University of London, and Director of the University’s Research Centre for the Holocaust and Twentieth Century History. For his J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Senior Scholar Scholar-in-Residence Fellowship, Professor Longerich conducted research and writing for his book project “Heinrich Himmler: A Biography.”

Professor Longerich has published widely and received several prestigious awards and fellowships for his research. He is recipient of a two-year research grant from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft and a one-year grant from Yad Vashem’s International Center for Holocaust Studies. He is the former Visiting Chair at the Fritz Bauer Institut, Universität Frankfurt where he conducted seminars on National Socialism in German Film, the History of the Holocaust, and Holocaust Historiography. Professor Longerich is the author of numerous books including Der ungeschriebene Befehl. Hilter und er Weg zur “Endlösung” (Piper, 2001) which was also published in English under the title The Unwritten Order: Hitler’s Role in the “Final Solution,” (Tempus, 2001); Politik der Vernichtung. Eine Gesamtdarstellung der nationalsozialistischen Judenverfolgung [Politics of Destruction: A Comprehensive History of Nazi Persecution of Jews] (Piper, 1998); Deutschland 1918-1933. Die Weimarer Republik Handbuch zur Geschichte [Germany 1918-1933: The Weimar Republic Historical Handbook] (Fackelträger, 1996); Hitlers Stellvertreter. Führung der NSDAP und Kontrolle des Staatsapparates durch den Stab Heß und Bormanns Partei-Kanzlei [Hitler’s Deputy: Nazi Party Leadership and the Control of the State Apparatus by the Stab Hess and Bormann’s Party Chancellery] (Saur, 1992); and Die braunen Bataillone. Geschichte der SA [The Brown Battalions: History of the SA] (C.H. Beck, 1989). He was also a major contributor to Yad Vashem’s German edition of the Encyclopedia of the Holocaust (Enzyklopädie des Holocaust: die Verfolgung und Ermordung der Europäischen Juden). At the time of his fellowship he was an active member of the Advisory Boards of The Journal of Holocaust Education and Zeitschrift für Genozidforschung. Professor Longerich’s breadth of knowledge concerning Nazi policy and the origins of the “Final Solution” has been widely consulted. He was one of four expert witnesses for the defense in the libel case brought by David Irving against Deborah Lipstadt and Penguin Books, and was a consultant for the Scottish War Crimes Investigation.

Fellowship Research

During his tenure at the Museum, Professor Longerich conducted research and writing for his biography of Heinrich Himmler. His study of the Nazi functionary included a thorough examination of the organizations and institutions of which Himmler was a part, further contributing to existing scholarly work on the history of the Nazi state. Professor Longerich’s research for this biography drew in large part from the Museum’s new material on Himmler that had been uncovered in Russian and other former Soviet state and regional archives.

Professor Longerich was in residence at the Mandel Center from October 1, 2003 to July 1, 2004.