It is a common misconception that Jews submitted passively to Nazi persecution. In reality, a significant number of German Jews defied anti-Jewish laws, restrictions, and violence on the local and national level, some even going as far as to protest in public. In this talk Wolf Gruner challenges the simplistic assumption of Jewish inaction in the face of ever worsening discrimination and oppression. Drawing on various new sources such as the logbooks of Berlin police precincts, trial materials from various German cities, as well as video testimonies held in the Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive, he demonstrates the prevalence of individual acts of resistance by German Jews from 1933 to 1945. Gruner is the Shapell-Guerin Chair in Jewish Studies and Professor of History at USC and the director of the Center for Advanced Genocide Research. His many publications include Jewish Forced Labor under the Nazis: Economic Needs and Racial Aims (Cambridge University Press) and Die Judenverfolgung im Protektorat Böhmen und Mähren. Lokale Initiativen, zentrale Entscheidungen, jüdische Antworten 1939-1945, the winner of the Sybil Halpern Milton Memorial Book Prize of the German Studies Association 2017.
Sponsor: Holocaust Living History Workshop (UC San Diego Library and Jewish Studies)