Archaeological and anthropological aspects of the Holocaust from a Jewish perspective
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The intention of this research is to offer innovative ideas on methods that can be utilised by academics and historians within a conflict context. The framework that will support the overall research is from that of an archaeological, anthropological and memory driven perspective. Discussion will turn to individual components such as liminality, monumentality, the built environment and landscape theory highlighting Nazi segregation policies. Analysis of ghettoisation, deportation and extermination policy through archaeological sub-disciplines and anthropology as well as comparison to other world atrocity sites will take place. This will illustrate that detection of similar techniques of incarceration are recognisable as modes of controlling fear whilst simultaneously achieving a terror regime. Initially propaganda policy of the National Socialist Party in both pre and World War II settings in Germany and throughout parts of Europe helped to fuel the already present culture of antisemitism. A significant and sinister shift in decision-making witnessed a move from persecution to exclusion and isolation that saw major cities already damaged by invasion and warfare ‘holding’ Jews in purposefully manufactured locations that was a preparatory step towards genocide. Ghettoisation facilitated the next stage in the process, deportation by train to extermination centres, as communities were despatched from ‘round-up’ points to ‘unknown destinations’ further east. At all times Jews were vulnerable and were placed into landscapes of terror, although either the strong individual or Nazi methods of control, at times, suppressed fear. Arrival at industrialised death camps was the final stage of a journey for the majority that culminated in death, but not before further measures that reduced the individual to a state beyond life, a liminal entity in a place where extreme conditions prevailed. Each component of the strategy was monitored and managed, as fear was euphemistically dismissed by the perpetrator and the by-stander.
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