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Robbing the Jews


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Table of Contents

Part I. Economic Persecution Inside the Third Reich, 1933-41: 1. The Nazis' initial confiscation measures; 2. Mounting obstacles to Jewish emigration, 1933-9; 3. The Anschluss and Kristallnacht: accelerating aryanization and confiscation in Austria and Germany, 1938-9; 4. Blocking Jewish accounts and preparations for mass confiscation, 1939-41; Part II. Jewish Property and the European Holocaust, 1939-45: 5. Destruction and plunder in the occupied east: Poland, the Soviet Union, and Serbia; 6. Settling accounts in the wake of the deportations; 7. 'Plunder by decree': the confiscation of Jewish property in German-occupied Western Europe; 8. Sovereign imitations: confiscations by states allied to Nazi Germany; 9. Receiving stolen property: neutral states and private companies; 10. Seizure of property and the social dynamics of the Holocaust.

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Penetrating revelations of Nazi confiscation of Jewish property, and of robbery's intimate relationship to the Holocaust.

About the Author

Martin Dean is an Applied Research Scholar at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies in Washington, DC. He received a scholarship in History from Queens' College, Cambridge, in 1980 and was awarded his PhD also at Queens' in 1989. His publications include Collaboration in the Holocaust: Crimes of the Local Police in Belorussia and Ukraine, 1941-44 (2000); Austrian Policy during the French Revolutionary Wars, 1796-99 (1993); and numerous articles. He has also worked as a Staff Historian for the Australian Special Investigations Unit and as the Senior Historian for the Metropolitan Police War Crimes Unit in London (1992-7). He has held a DAAD grant and was awarded the Pearl Resnick Post-Doctoral Fellowship by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 1997. He has acted as an expert witness in Nazi war crimes cases in Australia and Germany.


"Martin Dean's book is the first fully comprehensive study on the confiscation of Jewish property in the Holocaust and will set the standard for future research and analysis. In the complicated field of robbing and spoliation it connects important archival findings with a masterly knowledge of even remote research literature, cogently integrating the process of confiscation into the general history of the Holocaust. Therefore I warmly recommend Dean's study as a compulsory work for scholars, students, and all readers interested in the field of Holocaust history." -Frank Bajohr, Research Center for Contemporary History in Hamburg, Germany
"This book is surely the most comprehensive and clear guide in English to the manifold ways by which the Nazi regime, its agents, and its allies plundered the European Jews. Not only an admirable overview, but also a depressing case study in the crushing effects of bureaucratic ingenuity." -Peter Hayes, Northwestern University
"Few, if any scholars in the English-speaking world, can equal Martin Dean's record of intense study of the most appalling primary sources generated by the most thorough and most minutely recorded genocide in human history. It was, after all, a very German genocide and hence murder by bureaucratic machinery also involved the greatest theft in human history. Dean looks at all the ways that the German state stole Jewish property and shows the importance of hitherto neglected ones. Blocking the use of a person's bank account and limiting withdrawals slowly squeezed the individual's ability to act and ultimately to live at all. The horrible stories of pauperization and humiliation of the Jews under the Nazis make almost unbearable reading precisely because they are so real, so ordinary, and so terrible." -Jonathan Steinberg, University of Pennsylvania
" incredible base for future research. Highly recommended." -Choice
"Dean's command of the historiography and his expert ability at mining evidence is impressive." -Michael Berkowitz, American Historical Review
"...impressively wide-ranging study." -Tim Cole, Economic History Review
"...a scholarly overview based on substantial archival research and a synthesis of a wide range of secondary literature, fills a major gap." -Richard Breitman, HISTORY: Reviews of New Books
"Drawing on almost a decade's worth of systematic archival research, Dean's account will undoubtedly be required reading for all scholars interested in the despoliation of European Jewry between 1933 and 1945 for many years to come." -East European Jewish Affairs
"Robbing the Jews adeptly demonstrates the usefulness of financial documents in studying the Nazi regime and its persecution of Jews, especially for those already versed in the history of this period...the text is a carefully crafted, helpful study of confiscation politics." German Studies Review, Kara Ritzheimer, Oregon State University

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