Murder in Our Midst: The Holocaust, Industrial Killing, and Representation

Paperback | April 30, 1999

byOmer Bartov

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War endlessly tries to mask itself. The myth of the heroic soldier testing his individual courage stands in stark contrast to the reality of mass, anonymous death and the suppression of individual actions. Murder in Our Midst shows that this fundamental tension reached its natural conclusionin the Holocaust, and that disguising it has required an ongoing effort to misrepresent war and the Holocaust as something other than industrial killing. Examining a broad range of the representations of war's horrors, from scholarly depictions to those in popular literature, poetry, art, and the movies, Omer Bartov finds they have some things in common. Societies and cultures have attempted to form coherent images of horrific events, to drawdidactic lessons from them, and to exploit them to legitimate ideological or political positions. Made up of interconnected essays, this book is both a scholarly and an often personal and passionate examination of the emergence, implementation, and representation of industrial killing. Bartov draws out the links between recent revisionist attempts to minimize and deny the Holocaust, andHollywood's ongoing fascination with National Socialism and Hitler's "Final Solution." Arguing that the modern predicament reflects the effects of the Nazi genocide on current perceptions of war, history, and memory, this book is a plea for compassion and commitment in an increasingly violent andindifferent world.

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From Our Editors

Murder in Our Midst: The Holocaust, Industrial Killing, and Representation examines the emergence, implementation, and representation of industrial killing, an inherent and crucial component of modernity whose most extreme manifestation was the Holocaust. The mechanized, impersonal, and sustained mass destruction of human beings, organ...

From the Publisher

War endlessly tries to mask itself. The myth of the heroic soldier testing his individual courage stands in stark contrast to the reality of mass, anonymous death and the suppression of individual actions. Murder in Our Midst shows that this fundamental tension reached its natural conclusionin the Holocaust, and that disguising it has ...

Omer Bartov is at Rutgers University.

other books by Omer Bartov

see all books by Omer Bartov
Format:PaperbackDimensions:272 pages, 9.13 × 6.06 × 0.71 inPublished:April 30, 1999Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019509848X

ISBN - 13:9780195098488

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From Our Editors

Murder in Our Midst: The Holocaust, Industrial Killing, and Representation examines the emergence, implementation, and representation of industrial killing, an inherent and crucial component of modernity whose most extreme manifestation was the Holocaust. The mechanized, impersonal, and sustained mass destruction of human beings, organized and legitimized by states, scientists, jurists, and intellectuals, is rooted in the industrial slaughterhouse of the Great War. In Murder in Our Midst, Omer Bartov argues that the Nazi death factories are best understood in the context of modern warfare, beginning with the First World War. He shows how the way we understand ourselves reflects the ambivalent effects of the Holocaust on our perceptions of war and violence, history and memory, progress and barbarism. Analyzing a wide array of historical texts, works of fiction, films, and museums, Bartov leads the reader from ancient myths of heroism to the trenches of the Western Front, from Thomas Mann's romantic vision of war to Primo Levi's stark depictions of genocide, from co

Editorial Reviews

"...the essays in this work, taken together or read as discreet entities, are extremely valuable and persuasive..."--German Studies Review