History holocaust Test

  • Created by: hdownes
  • Created on: 04-05-18 20:37

How Do we define the holocaust

You can't really excatly define it. But people have described it as the violent deaths of large groups of people. 

Before World War II, the word was used by Winston Churchill and others to refer to the genocide of Armenians during World War I.

The word "holocaust" comes from the the Greek word holokauston, itself a translation of the Hebrew olah, meaning "completely burnt offering to God,"implying that Jews and other "undesirables" murdered during World War II were a sacrifice to God.

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History of Antisemitism

Summed up - prejudice and/or discrimination against Jews as individuals and as a group.

Antisemitsim didnt start in WW2 is was going on for centurys's before. One of the first times it happened was 399 C.E when jews were forbidden to marry christians. So the war wasnt the first time it happened.

It's based on stereotypes and myths that target Jews as a people, their religious practices and beliefs, and the Jewish State of Israel. 

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Jewish Persecution

1933 -  BoyCott of jewish Businesses.                                                                            Jewish civil servants, lawyers and teachers sacked.

1935 - Nuremburg Laws (15 September) Jews could not be citizens. They were not allowed to vote or to marry a German.

1938 - Jewish children were forbidden to go to school and adults could not be doctors. Kristellnach happened

1939 - Jews were forced to live in gehhtos 

1941 - Army Einsatzgruppen squads in Russia started mass shootings of the jews. All jews were forced to wear a yellow start of david.

1942 - The Wansee conference,(20th Jan) decided on the final solution, which was too gas all the jews. The main death camps were, Auschwitz, Treblinka and Sobibor.


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On November 9 to November 10, 1938, in an incident known as “Kristallnacht”, Nazis in Germany torched synagogues, vandalized Jewish homes, schools and businesses and killed close to 100 Jews.

They now call it " The Night of Broken Glass", over 30,000 people were arresetd and taken to concentration camps.

After Kristallnacht, conditions for German Jews grew increasingly worse.

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Why didn't more jewish people leave?

Reasons why:

They were sure that Hitler was a passing phase and things would eventually get better. Most German Jews thought of themselves as Germans who happened to be Jewish and saw no reason to have fear.

There were over 10,000 of people at a time looking to leave so it was hard for other countires. After 1938 countries started taking less and less refugees.

Familys wanted to stay together but usually the embacies would not take children.

They needed permission and exit VISA's, also they had lots of family and it would be hard to leave it all behind.

Lots of countries had number limits.

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A confined special areas in cities and towns that jews were kept in.

They were made to stay in the ghettos because they were surrounded by barbed wire,brick wallls and armed guards. 

The two largest ghettos were established in Warsaw and Lodz (Poland)

Jews were also transported from austria and Czechslovakia to ghettos in Poland.

The conditions in warsaw were so bad that betwwen 1940 & 1942 an estimated 100,000 Jews died from starvation and disease.

They built schools and did lots of things to keep their culture and not let it effect them. Some buried photo boxes to preserve memories, they wanted to prove to the Nazis that they were stronger than they thought.

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Death and Concentration Camps

Death Camp: These killing centers were designed for systematic mass murder. They had one purpose: to kill undesirables.

Concentration Camp:These detention and labor centers were sometimes used to kill small groups of people. However, they had different purposes such as reformatory, punishment, POW, and transit camps.

According to a Nazi at the Nuremburg Trials, Auschwitz and Majdanek were extermination camps, while Dachau and Buchenwald were 'normal' concentration camps.

They had 6 death camps :Auschwitz, Chelmo, Majdanek, Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka.

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More people died in Aushwitz than Britsih and American losses in WW2 combined.

Auschwitz camp consisted of 28 blocks. Most of them were residential buildings for prisoners. The blocks were intended for about 700 prisoners, however, their number reached even 1,200. In the second part of the camp – Birkenau – there were two types of barracks for prisoners: brick and wooden. Each of them lacked sanitary facilities, lights, and heating. 

Half a liter of water with a substitute of coffee or tea in the morning. 1 liter of soup for dinner. Soups were disgusting, so it was hard for the new prisoners to eat them. Black bread for supper, with some sausage, margarine, marmalade or cheese.

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Intentionalists VS Functionalists

Intentionalist - The Nazis' had a constant and unwavering intention to destroy European Jews. 
They think it started/ Hitler planned it all in 1925, when he wrote 'Mein Kampf'

Functionalist - The Holocaust was reached by a 'twisted road' - many forecs inside and outside of germany helped to bring it about.

They think it started during the war when more things evolved rather than a decade before.

Dawidowicz was a intentionalist and Mommsen was a functionalist.

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