New Books Network

James Dawes, “Evil Men” (Harvard UP, 2013)
This week a Syrian rebel ripped the heart out of a loyalist fighter and ate part of it. You can see it on YouTube. Many people asked “How can people do things like this?” In his new book Evil Men (Harvard UP, 2013), James Dawes explores why people commit horrible... Read More
Richard Rashke, “Useful Enemies: John Demjanjuk and America’s Open-Door Policy for Nazi War Criminals” (Delphinium, 2013)
You may have heard of a fellow named Ivan or John Demjanuik. He made the news–repeatedly over a 30 year period– because he was, as many people probably remember, a Nazi war criminal nick-named “Ivan the Terrible” for his brutal treatment of Jews (and others) in the Sobibor death camp.... Read More
Donald Bloxham, “The Final Solution: A Genocide” (Oxford UP, 2009)
The end of the Cold War dramatically changed research into the Holocaust. The gradual opening up of archives across Eastern Europe allowed a flood of local and regional studies that transformed our understanding of the Final Solution. We now know much more about the mechanics of destruction in the East,... Read More
John K. Roth and Carol Rittner, “Rape: Weapon of War and Genocide” (Paragon House, 2012)
While reading about genocide and mass violence should always be be disturbing, a certain numbness sets in over time. Every once in a while, however, a book breaks through that numbness to remind the reader of the horror inherent in the subject. The new book Rape: Weapon of War and... Read More
Lee Ann Fujii, “Killing Neighbors:  Webs of Violence in Rwanda” (Cornell UP, 2009)
The question Lee Ann Fujii asks in her new book Killing Neighbors: Webs of Violence in Rwanda (Cornell University Press, 2009) is a traditional one in genocide studies. Her research builds on earlier scholars such as Christopher Browning, James Waller and Scott Strauss. Her eye for nuances and for the... Read More
Mary Fulbrook, “A Small Near Town Auschwitz: Ordinary Nazis and the Holocaust” (Oxford UP, 2012)
The question of how “ordinary Germans” managed to commit genocide is a classic (and troubling) one in modern historiography. It’s been well studied and so it’s hard to say anything new about it. But Mary Fulbrook has done precisely that in A Small Town Near Auschwitz: Ordinary Nazis and the... Read More
Marek Jan Chodakiewicz, “The Massacre in Jedwabne, July 10, 1941: Before, During, After” (Columbia UP, 2005)
On July 10, 1941, Poles in the town of Jedwabne together with some number of German functionaries herded nearly 500 Jews into a barn and burnt them alive. In 2000, the sociologist Jan Gross published a book about the subject that, very shortly thereafter, started a huge controversy about Polish... Read More