The Remnants of Nazi Leaders: Memories of Children of Infamous Perpetrators, 1959 - 2019

Date

2019

Authors

Zepeda, Gabrielle Diane

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Abstract

This thesis will compare and contrast the wartime memories of the children of infamous SS leaders, such as Heinrich Himmler, Martin Bormann, Herman Göring, Hans Frank, Amon Göth, and Rudolph Hess. For the purposes of this study, I will divide these memories into two groups: (1) the "rejectors" or those whose memories lead them to disown their fathers and their father's legacy, and (2) the "honorers" or those who saw their father's more favorably and wished to keep the positive memory of their father at the forefront. I will also examine a small but significant group of children who complicate this binary of honor and rejection because they are unsure of how they remember their fathers. These children offer a unique case study to show the complications of remembrance of perpetrators, familial memory, and belonging. Most research of perpetrator's children has focused on psychology and a journalistic survey of remembrance; this study is significant in that it attempts to place the narrative of perpetrator's children into a larger historical context of how the war is processed and remembered.

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Keywords

Children, Genocide, Holocaust, Memory, Second Generation, World War II

Citation

Department

History