Holocaust and Genocide Studies

An introduction to the core beliefs, traditions, and world views of the three Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity, Islam.

An exploration of Jewish rituals and traditions, including in-depth examination of holidays and life-cycle events utilizing historical and contemporary religious and descriptive texts. Examined will be basic theological principles of Judaism, historical and contemporary diversity within Jewish religious practice, and belief and culture. Fall.

Survey of the social, political, and cultural experience of the Jewish people throughout the world, beginning with the Roman expulsion from their homeland in 70 C.E. and working forward to the events that led to the Holocaust and the formation of the State of Israel in the 20th century. Spring.

Examines the culture of European Jews before the Holocaust and literature that reflects the destruction of that culture in World War II. Includes texts by such authors as Ida Fink, Elie Wiesel, Primo Levi, Nelly Sachs, Imre Kertesz, and Jurek Becker. Prerequisite: ITW 101. Cross-listed as IHENG 251. Spring.

Examines the genocide and mass murder committed by the Nazi regime during 1939-45. Also surveys long- and short-term factors, including World War I and Germany's failed post-war democratic experiment, which help explain the consolidation of a racially based totalitarian regime. Cross-listed as IHHIST 252. Spring.

How did women's Holocaust experiences differ from those of men? An interdisciplinary exploration of gender in Central European families, ghettos, camps, and resistance, this course examines connections between the Holocaust and present-day manifestations of anti-Semitism, sexism, homophobia, and nationalism. Readings are drawn from history, women's studies, and Holocaust memoirs. Cross-listed as IIWGS 254. Occasionally.

This course identifies and studies deliberate measures aimed at the annihilation of an economic, ethnic, political, religious, or cultural group before and after the term "genocide" was coined in 1944 by Raphael Lemkin. Students will undertake an interdisciplinary examination of the historical and political development of the concept of genocide. Fall.

Exploration of a specific issue or theme applying interdisciplinary methods to readings and analysis related to Holocaust and/or genocide studies. Builds on foundations acquired in IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252 or IIHGS 255, the two introductory courses. May be repeated once for credit as topics change. Prerequisite: IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252 or IIHGS 255, and permission of instructor. Occasionally.

Jewish Music from biblical times to the present. Includes liturgical, cantorial, holiday, folk, and concert music; Israeli, Yiddish, Klezmer, and contemporary synagogue music; choral tradition and music of the Holocaust. Fall, Spring.

This course examines ethical, philosophical, and theological issues relating to the experience of the Holocaust and the broader human concerns of evil and suffering. Topics include the uniqueness and universality of the Holocaust as well as questions of justice. Cross-listed as PHIL 313. Fall.

Analyzes the Holocaust from a comparative, sociological perspective, applying relevant theories and concepts. Emphasis is on social and cultural forces that led to the Holocaust, including stereotyping, discrimination, anti-Semitism, institutional changes, and social-political indifference. Prerequisite: IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252 or SOC 201. Cross-listed as SOC 326. Fall, odd years.

Focusing on genocide after the Holocaust, this course evaluates theoretical debates on what constitutes genocide and why genocide takes place. It also comparatively analyzes genocide that has occurred in different nation-states from a sociological perspective. Prerequisite: IIHGS 255 or SOC 201. Cross-listed as SOC 327. Spring, even years.

Examines various filmic approaches taken to represent the attempt to destroy European Jewry in the first half of the 20th century. Documentary and narrative film are examined, together with the cultures and time periods within which the films were produced. Ethical issues will be considered alongside cultural and formal concerns. Prerequisites: IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252 or permission of instructor. Spring, even years.

Examines the Nazi rise to power during the Weimar Republic, the consolidation of totalitarian rule, the transformation of racial ideology into policy, Hitler's foreign policy as prelude to war, World War II, and the Holocaust. Cross-listed as HIST 353. Spring.

An in-depth study of the links between religion and violence, examining the Holocaust as a paradigmatic case while exploring other representative cases of religious violence. Prerequisite: 24 credits in ISP, including ITW 101 and IQL 101. Spring, even years.

Explores relationship between Christianity and Judaism with special attention to historic antipathies, their role in preparing European culture for the Holocaust, and mixed legacies of contempt and good will that distinguished Christian persecution, resistance, and rescue during the Third Reich. Analyzes responses to this difficult history and its ongoing impact. Prerequisite: 24 credits in ISP including ITW-101 and IQL- 101. Spring, odd years.

An examination of the history of the 19th- and 20th-century eugenics movement in the United States and Europe. Efforts to "improve" humanity by selectively controlling or eliminating individuals deemed socially undesirable because of race or disability will be investigated by exploring science, legislation, and popular culture. Cross-listed as HIST 373. Fall, odd years.

An investigation of two or more genocides by comparative method. Focus is on the situation and actions of the perpetrators, victims, resistance fighters, bystanders, and rescuers - all examined in order to find essential similarities as well as differences, and to derive explanations for specific cases of genocide. Prerequisite: IIHGS 255, or permission of instructor. Spring.

Examines a selected subject or theme in Holocaust and/or genocide at an intermediate level. May be repeated as subjects or themes change. Occasionally.

This course involves intensive sociological study of a particular genocide. The genocide to be studied can change in any given semester. Topics include application of the term genocide; historical, social, and cultural background; theoretical explanations for the genocide; and the extent of intervention to stop it. Prerequisite: IIHGS 255 or SOC 305, or permission of instructor. Cross-listed as SOC 427. Occasionally.

Advanced interdisciplinary exploration of a specific issue or theme not covered in depth by the regular curriculum. Content will vary, but builds on foundations acquired in prior study. Prerequisite: Either IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252 or IIHGS 255, and permission of instructor. Occasionally.

Aimed at an original research or creative project in Holocaust and/or Genocide Studies. Under the guidance of a faculty sponsor and committee, student will develop, research, and publicly present an individualized project on a topic jointly selected with the sponsor. Prerequisites: Senior standing; IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252, IIHGS 255, HGS 495; both overall and subject area GPA of 3.5 or above; approval by faculty in HGS Department.

Students will investigate both secondary and primary source material to provide an in-depth analysis of one or more key issues related to the Holocaust and select cases of genocide. They will demonstrate the ability to think critically, and write and speak effectively. May be repeated for credit as topics change. Prerequisites: Junior or senior status as HGS major or minor. 12 or more credits in HGS, IHHGS, or IIHGS that must include IHHGS 252 and IIHGS 255, or permission of instructor. Fall.

HGS497 Internship

1-8 credits

Focus is on a student researching, organizing, and writing about a Holocaust or genocide-based topic in cooperation with the Cohen Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies or some other society, resource center, museum, or foundation dedicated to Holocaust and/or genocide studies. May be repeated for a total of 8 credits. Prerequisites: IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252 or IIHGS 255, and permission of instructor. Occasionally.

In-depth study of a topic or problem selected and pursued in consultation with a faculty member. Design will be at the faculty member's discretion. May be repeated for a total of 8 credits. Prerequisites: IHHGS 252/IHHIST 252 or IIHGS 255 and one 300-level or higher HGS course, and permission of instructor. Occasionally.