Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To download the bibliographic list of all PEP-Web content…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Did you know that you can download a bibliography of all content available on PEP Web to import to Endnote, Refer, or other bibliography manager? Just click on the link found at the bottom of the webpage. You can import into any UTF-8 (Unicode) compatible software which can import data in “Refer” format. You can get a free trial of one such program, Endnote, by clicking here.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Stimmel, B. (1998). Hitler's Willing Executioners. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 46(2):650-653.

(1998). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 46(2):650-653

Hitler's Willing Executioners

Barbara Stimmel

I read with great interest Stanley Coen's review of Daniel Goldhagen's Hitler's Willing Executioners (JAPA 44/3). Goldhagen's book is provocative and important, yet I was skeptical of its being reviewed in a psychoanalytic journal; after having read Coen's review, I was no longer skeptical but sure. I question the wisdom of applying psychoanalytic thought to extraordinarily complex world events.

Coen unfortunately makes only passing reference to one of the centerpieces of Goldhagen's treatise: “For his data,” writes Coen, Goldhagen “describes such “ordinary Germans,” belonging neither to the Nazis nor the SS, who served in police battalions, ‘work’ camps, and death marches.” These data, the police battalions, work camps, and death marches, constitute three powerful arguments, even proof, of the unusual complicity of the German people in the Holocaust. Any thinking observer must explain the reality of the German police, virtually all of whom had bloody hands, though they were excused from killing Jews; of the work camps, with their dehumanizing and brutal Sisyphean chores, run by ‘ordinary’ Germans and producing death rates almost at the level of the death camps themselves; and finally (if one can use that word) of the unbelievable, pointless death marches after the war was all but lost, marches on which German guards drove, beat, and shot their Jewish victims as they were dragged through countless German villages where no one stood up in protest or defense.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2020, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.