Order of Terror

The Concentration Camp
Princeton University Press
  • 1. Auflage
  • |
  • erschienen am 1. Januar 1999
  • |
  • 368 Seiten
E-Book | PDF mit Adobe DRM | Systemvoraussetzungen
978-1-4008-2218-8 (ISBN)

During the twelve years from 1933 until 1945, the concentration camp operated as a terror society. In this pioneering book, the renowned German sociologist Wolfgang Sofsky looks at the concentration camp from the inside as a laboratory of cruelty and a system of absolute power built on extreme violence, starvation, "terror labor," and the business-like extermination of human beings.

Based on historical documents and the reports of survivors, the book details how the resistance of prisoners was broken down. Arbitrary terror and routine violence destroyed personal identity and social solidarity, disrupted the very ideas of time and space, perverted human work into torture, and unleashed innumerable atrocities. As a result, daily life was reduced to a permanent struggle for survival, even as the meaning of self-preservation was extinguished. Sofsky takes us from the searing, unforgettable image of the Muselmann--Auschwitz jargon for the "walking dead"--to chronicles of epidemics, terror punishments, selections, and torture.

The society of the camp was dominated by the S.S. and a system of graduated and forced collaboration which turned selected victims into accomplices of terror. Sofsky shows that the S.S. was not a rigid bureaucracy, but a system with ample room for autonomy. The S.S. demanded individual initiative of its members. Consequently, although they were not required to torment or murder prisoners, officers and guards often exploited their freedom to do so--in passing or on a whim, with cause, or without.

The order of terror described by Sofsky culminated in the organized murder of millions of European Jews and Gypsies in the death-factories of Auschwitz and Treblinka. By the end of this book, Sofsky shows that the German concentration camp system cannot be seen as a temporary lapse into barbarism. Instead, it must be conceived as a product of modern civilization, where institutionalized, state-run human cruelty became possible with or without the mobilizing feelings of hatred.

Course Book
  • Englisch
  • Princeton
  • |
  • USA
  • Digitale Ausgabe
  • 3 line illus. 4 tables
  • |
  • 3 line illus. 4 tables
  • 2,66 MB
978-1-4008-2218-8 (9781400822188)
1-4008-2218-1 (1400822181)
weitere Ausgaben werden ermittelt
Wolfgang Sofsky Translated from the German by William Templer
	List of Tables and Figures	 	Acknowledgments	 Pt. I	Introduction	1 1	Entry	3 2	Absolute Power	16 3	On the History of the Concentration Camps	28 Pt. II	Space and Time	45 4	Zones and Camp Plans	47 5	Boundary and Gate	55 6	The Block	65 7	Camp Time	73 8	Prisoner's Time	82 Pt. III	Social Structures	95 9	The SS Personnel	97 10	Classes and Classifications	117 11	Self-Management and the Gradation of Power	130 12	The Aristocracy	145 13	Mass, Exchange, Dissociation	153 Pt. IV	Work	165 14	Work and Slavery	167 15	The Beneficiaries	173 16	Work Situations	185 Pt. V	Violence and Death	197 17	The Muselmann	199 18	Epidemics	206 19	Terror Punishment	214 20	Violent Excesses	223 21	Selection	241 22	The Death Factory	259 	Epilogue	276 	Selected Glossary and Abbreviations	283 	Abbreviations Used in Notes and Bibliography	289 	Notes	291 	Bibliography	343

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