CFP: Interdisciplinary, Holocaust education

Although a great deal of research related to Holocaust education centers around individuals or groups, especially resistance movements, or NSDAP leaders, there is even more research needed on interdisciplinary topics that bridge Holocaust education and other academic endeavors. We wish to encourage scholars to pursue these topics.

Many were "birthed" through our curiosity about White Rose matters. All may be queried either specifically related to White Rose resistance, other resistance, or general Holocaust studies. Please note your focus when you query.

Reminder that we accept queries for short-short essays of approximately 450 words, short essays 1800-3600 words, white papers 4500-13,500 words, and short or long book treatments 13,500-150,000 words.

  • Analysis of all three White Rose trials by someone well-versed in National Socialist "law" - they seem to differ from a legal standpoint, and it could be interesting to understand why. (Also the bündische trials...) To expand past White Rose, please compare any Nazi-era trials, for example: Lenient sentences versus death penalty; difference between judges, Freisler versus the rest of Germany; jurisdictional differences.
  • Similarly: A comparison of the legal strategies employed by the various defense counsel. Was any of it legitimate? Was there a noticeable difference between the defense that was actually paid for (e.g. Schmorell's defense counsel) and the court-appointed counsel? As above, please also query legal strategies unrelated to White Rose trials.
  • Study of the literature (both secular and religious) that was read by the friends of the White Rose, other resistance movements, or by the general population. This is a vast topic, so no bidding wars are necessary. Did what they read make a difference in their individual approaches?
  • Same for the music they listened to (with same comment about diversity), as well as concerts and theater productions they attended. Please specify pop music, classical music, theater, movies, and other (e.g. variety clubs).
  • White Tose architectural topic: We would love to have an architecture + history major track the changes in Munich, Stuttgart, and Ulm from 1937 to 1945 (but especially to October 1943). Read blueprints to know exact layouts of major structures (university, Justizpalast, Stadelheim Prison, the Kaserne, the various White Rose residences in all cities with street and house plans) as they knew them. And what changed with the bombings: When neighboring houses were destroyed and to what extent. Anneliese Knoop-Graf once noted that this aspect of White Rose history is the most distorted, because despite best intentions, the survivors can only remember the physical buildings as they have seen them in recent years. This detail has been all but lost. Especially due to the movies that have been made... 
  • In short, Blumberg. This place affected Sophie Scholl deeply. It's where she was suicidal. All three books in our History bibliography are in German, and all are ... glossed over. To be kind. For White Rose query, please focus on Blumberg while Sophie Scholl lived there. But we do not wish to limit topic to her experience only. Blumberg provides a brilliant case study for failed NSDAP mining and forced labor policies.
  • The Vollmoeller (alt. Vollmöller) industries (especially Vollmoeller Mode in Berlin) during the Third Reich. 
  • Euthanasia/eugenics, in particular researching various friends and family members that White Rose "survivors" have described as sacrificed to this program. What is true and what is not? And specifically addressing the work done at the facility in Zwiefalten. White Rose queries should focus on what they knew, but we also welcome studies specifically of Zwiefalten, and also of the effects of the T4 program on German society.
  • Comparison of Hitler Youth organizations across Germany. For White Rose, please focus on comparisons between Munich, Stuttgart, Ulm, and Saarbrücken. Comparisons of other regions are also welcome.
  • Was there any correlation between Nazi pogroms and Jewish holidays (including Shabbat)? For White Rose, please focus especially on Munich, Ulm, Stuttgart, and Saarbrücken, and what the students of the White Rose saw firsthand. This topic should not be limited to White Rose, however, as "knowing" is a large part of Holocaust education.
  • Nail down an oft-repeated legend: It is said that during a Hitler speech in Ulm in 1933, someone cut the cables to his microphone, and he vowed not to come back to the city. But Susanne Hirzel noted that he did return much later; she does not recall a speech, just an appearance. This is too good to leave dangling. Will it float [TM David Letterman]?
  • The actual relationship between Harnack and Bonhoeffer resistance groups. They were cousins, but was there really an overlap in their resistance efforts? If so, what did it look like?
  • Policies regarding private ownership of automobiles from 1938 - 1945. Believe it or not, this is a Streitpunkt in more than one part of White Rose history. Beyond White Rose, it provides insights to NSDAP attitudes towards private ownership of assets like automobiles.
  • White Rose topic: Detlef Bald missed a perfect chance to render this topic moot. He chose to believe Wittenstein's docs without asking questions about authenticity, and blew it. So: We would very much like to see a military analysis of who in the White Rose saw what when. For example, follow Hans Scholl's movements through Belgium, Luxembourg, and France in 1940. Track Willi Graf over his extended assignment with the 252nd. And so on. Help those of us who are not military historians understand the real role that being part of the Wehrmacht had on the individuals in the White Rose (or other resistance efforts throughout Germany). If you are willing to tackle every single soldier of the White Rose and do the tedious-dusty archives work, this could be a phenomenal project. Read Bald's book first (check it out at a library, don't buy it) to know what NOT to do. 
  • Military history, not White Rose: Again, this is part of the "knowing" study. What was communicated from the various fronts to friends and family back home? How did men in the same units respond to the atrocities and horrors they witnessed?
  • Lutheran and Catholic church holidays in Bavaria, Württemberg, and the Saarland during the Third Reich. What became of them? Were any discontinued? Dates changed? How did Hitler-mania affect the celebration of religious holy days? 
  • White Rose topic only: We will look at proposals that deal with religion and the White Rose, but know in advance that these stand the least chance of acceptance. The topic has been done to death, and 99% of the time, the author has gotten it wrong. I would recommend that if you are Catholic, you do Lutheran aspects of White Rose in particular and German resistance in general, and if you are Lutheran, the Catholic aspects, and so on. Emotion seems to get in the way of unbiased scholarship when you mix religion and German resistance (especially White Rose). If you think YOU can get it right, then query away! 
  • Religion, not White Rose: Most interested in primary source documents, not opinion pieces. How did a person's religious beliefs affect their attitudes to the NSDAP and its policies? Why did some people continue to follow, while others saw events as counter to their faith? How did religion in 1933-1945 impact religion in postwar Germany? If not postwar Europe in general?
  • The role and function of the Studentenkompanie, especially in Munich.
  • Another military question: What were the requirements for promotion to sergeant, and then to the next level? What was the requirement for promotion to 'morale officer' in the Wehrmacht? In general, what sort of paperwork had to be filed? If you can find the paperwork that Scholl, Schmorell, Graf, Wittenstein et al filed for their respective promotions (and the paperwork that Hans Scholl filed for his two attempts to become a higher-ranking officer), all the better. For non-White Rose queries, a general understanding of qualifications required would be a good addition to Holocaust studies.
  • The RAD camp in Krauchenwies. We got pictures only and interviewed two people onsite. It deserves at least an essay! As White Rose topic, Krauchenwies while Sophie Scholl was there. As non-White Rose topic, Krauchenwies RAD camp in general. Please feel free to expand this topic to a comparative study of RAD camps.
  • White Rose topic: Not everything can be dreadfully serious. We would love to see research into all the various places they went skiing. Similarly, a paper about the products they call by name in diaries and letters would be fascinating and un-boring. What did these serious students do for fun? 
  • Fun as non-White Rose topic: What did young people do for fun between 1933-1945? What activities did youth in resistance avoid?
  • Psychology of the White Rose. Profiles of each individual student, what made them tick, what their strengths and weaknesses were. Note that Scholls must wait until censorship is lifted, so don't even query for them. 
  • White Rose topic: Lilo Fürst-Ramdohr believes that their political like-mindedness was not actually the decisive factor in the friendships that came to be called the White Rose. She argues that all except Scholls came from extremely dysfunctional families where they could not communicate with parents whom they could not trust (and Ruth Sachs contends that Hans and Sophie Scholl also did - Inge just masked it with well-woven legend post-war). This may be a project that will have to be tackled one family at a time, although the overarching concept could also be addressed with all families considered. But we believe that ultimately, this study will be the key that unlocks the most White Rose secrets and finally allows us to understand the nature of informed dissent, civil disobedience, and what draws most people to act in unison with a select group of friends. 

Think of something that is not on this list? Talk to us!