Sign up for our Email Newsletter Berghahn Books Logo

berghahn New York · Oxford

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Instagram
Recognizing the Past in the Present: New Studies on Medicine before, during, and after the Holocaust

View Table of Contents

Of Related Interest

See Related
History Journals

Email Newsletters

Sign up for our email newsletters to get customized updates on new Berghahn publications.

Click here to select your preferences

Recognizing the Past in the Present

New Studies on Medicine before, during, and after the Holocaust

Edited by Sabine Hildebrandt, Miriam Offer, and Michael A. Grodin
Foreword by William E. Seidelman

464 pages, 21 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78920-784-2 $155.00/£115.00 Hb Not Yet Published (December 2020)

eISBN 978-1-78920-785-9 eBook Not Yet Published

Hb   Recommend to your Library Available in GOBI®


“This volume offers new research and insights on a range of issues not often covered in the extant historical literature. Its mix of topics and perspectives is a particular virtue, ranging from the history of medicine to Jewish religious practice, gender, biographical and institutional studies, and the 'postwar continuities and legacies’ that are a particular emphasis and strength of the volume.” • Geoffrey Cocks, Professor Emeritus of History at Albion College


Following decades of silence about the involvement of doctors, medical researchers and other health professionals in the Holocaust and other National Socialist (Nazi) crimes, scholars in recent years have produced a growing body of research that reveals the pervasive extent of that complicity. This interdisciplinary collection of studies presents documentation of the critical role medicine played in realizing the policies of Hitler’s regime. It traces the history of Nazi medicine from its roots in the racial theories of the 1920s, through its manifestations during the Nazi period, on to legacies and continuities from the postwar years to the present.

Sabine Hildebrandt is Associate Professor of Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics at Boston Children’s Hospital and serves as an anatomy educator at Harvard Medical School. She is the author of The Anatomy of Murder: Ethical Transgressions and Anatomical Science during the Third Reich (Berghahn, 2016).

Miriam Offer is Senior Lecturer in the Holocaust Studies Program, Western Galilee College and teaches Medicine and the Holocaust at Tel Aviv University. She is the author of White Coats Inside the Ghetto: Jewish Medicine in Poland During the Holocaust (Hebrew, Yad Vashem, 2015).

Michael A. Grodin is Professor of Health Law, Ethics & Human Rights at the Boston University School of Public Health and is also Professor and Director of the Project on Medicine and the Holocaust at the Eli Wiesel Center for Jewish Studies in the College of Arts and Sciences at Boston University. His books include the edited volume Jewish Medical Resistance in the Holocaust (Berghahn, 2014).

Subject: History: 20th Century to Present Genocide History Jewish Studies
Area: Europe


List of Illustrations

William E. Seidelman

Introduction to the Volume: Recognizing the Past in the Present
Sabine Hildebrandt, Miriam Offer, and Michael A. Grodin

Part I: The Past

Chapter 1. Non-Mechanistic Explanatory Styles in Interwar German Racial Theory: A Comparison of Hans F. K. Günther and Ludwig Ferdinand Clauß
Amit Varshizky

Chapter 2. From “Racial Surveys” to Medical Experiments in Prisoner of War Camps
Margit Berner

Chapter 3. "Der Doktor":  The Writings of Mordechai Lensky During the Interwar Period
Miriam Offer

Chapter 4. Rabbinic Responsa During the Holocaust: The Life-for-Life Problem
Johnathan I. Kelly, Erin L. Miller, Rabbi Joseph Polak, Robert Kirschner, and Michael A. Grodin

Chapter 5. Un(B)earable: Pregnant Bodies and Obstetrical Genocide‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬
Annette Finley-Croswhite

Chapter 6. “Complete Mastery of the Subject”: The Connection between Forced Sterilization and Gynecological Fertility Research in National Socialism
Gabriele Czarnowski

Chapter 7. Deference, Pragmatism, Ideology: The Medical Student Kurt Gerstein and the Predicament of Ethical Conduct under National Socialism
Mathias Schütz

Chapter 8. Ludwig Stumpfegger (1910–1945): A Career at the Interface of Hitler, Himmler and Ravensbrück Concentration Camp
Stephanie Kaiser and Mathias Schmidt

Chapter 9. Between Participation in National Socialist Medicine and Everyday Administrative Action: On the Economic Argument of the Psychiatric Planning Commission (1941–1945)
Felicitas Söhner

Chapter 10. Dentists in National Socialist (Nazi) Germany: A Fragmented Profession
Matthis Krischel

Chapter 11. Only Following Orders? Aviation Medicine in Nazi Germany
Alexander von Lünen

Chapter 12. Blood and Bones from Auschwitz: The Mengele Link
Paul J. Weindling

Part II: The Present: Postwar Continuities, Legacies, and Reflections

Chapter 13. Renewed Trauma:  Abraham De La Penha’s Testimony against Dr Franz Lucas in the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trial
Andrew Wisely

Chapter 14. Schluss mit der Rassenschande!” From Separation to Extermination: The Fate of Jewish Mentally Ill Patients in Germany and Occupied Poland 1939–42
Kamila Uzarczyk

Chapter 15. “Since she was in Auschwitz the patient feels that she is being persecuted”: Holocaust Survivors and Austrian Psychiatry after World War II
Herwig Czech

Chapter 16. “To Prevent Further Unfounded Aly Constructions”
Götz Aly

Chapter 17. Baneful Medicine and a Radical Bioethics in Contemporary Art
Andrew Weinstein

Chapter 18. The History of the Vienna Protocol
Sabine Hildebrandt, Joseph A. Polak, Michael A. Grodin, and William E. Seidelman

Conclusion: The Past in the Present and the Future


Back to Top