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Virtual PhD and a Cup of Tea: The Nazis speak for themselves: analysing perpetrator’s narratives in The Nuremberg Trial
October 5, 2021 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Part of The Wiener Holocaust Library’s PhD and a Cup of Tea doctoral seminar series.
This presentation examines the discursive strategies of the Nazi defendants throughout the Nuremberg Trial (1945-1946), also known as the International Military Tribunal (IMT), the first trial of Europe’s denazification process that judged twenty-two men and served as the basis for all the subsequent Nazi trials. This paper intends to develop a set of archetypes of the ways the Nazis behave and evade responsibility during a criminal trial. Using the trials transcripts and the interviews the Nazis provide for the prison psychiatrist Leon Goldensohn and the prison psychologist G.M. Gilbert, this paper will present a myriad of narratives: Nazis who remain Nazis even when facing death, Nazis who deny their participation in any activity that could be seen as criminal, and Nazis who claim to have resisted Nazism from the beginning.
About the speaker:
Maria Visconti is a Ph.D. candidate at the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) in Brazil and one of the coordinators of the Brazilian Center for Nazism and Holocaust Studies (NEPAT). She is a member of The Perpetrator Studies Network and her dissertation, “‘A thousand years will pass and still this guilt of Germany will not have been erased’: Nazis’ narrative constructions during the Nuremberg Trial (1945-1946)” develops a set of archetypes of ways the Nazis behave and evade responsibility during a post-war trial. Thus, these archetypes and this research can serve as a basis to better understand similar perpetrator narratives in other trials.
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