The nazi doctors medical killing and the psychology of genocide

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the nazi doctors medical killing and the psychology of genocide

The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide by Robert Jay Lifton

Nazi doctors did more than conduct bizarre experiments on concentration-camp inmates; they supervised the entire process of medical mass murder, from selecting those who were to be exterminated to disposing of corpses. Lifton (The Broken Connection; The Life of the Self shows that this medically supervised killing was done in the name of healing, as part of a racist program to cleanse the Aryan body politic.

After the German eugenics campaign of the 1920s for forced sterilization of the unfit, it was but one step to euthanasia, which in the Nazi context meant systematic murder of Jews. Building on interviews with former Nazi physicians and their prisoners, Lifton presents a disturbing portrait of careerists who killed to overcome feelings of powerlessness.

He includes a chapter on Josef Mengele and one on Eduard Wirths, the kind, decent doctor (as some inmates described him) who set up the Auschwitz death machinery. Lifton also psychoanalyzes the German people, scarred by the devastation of World War I and mystically seeking regeneration. This profound study ranks with the most insightful books on the Holocaust.
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Robert Jay Lifton - "Genocidal Mentality: Nazi Doctors and the Holocaust"

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Robert Jay Lifton

The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide

Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize With a new preface by the author In his most powerful and important book, renowned psychiatrist Robert Jay Lifton presents a brilliant analysis of the crucial role that German doctors played in the Nazi genocide. Robert Jay Lifton is a lecturer in Psychiatry at Columbia University and distinguished professor emeritus of psychiatry and psychology at the City University of New York. He has previously taught at Yale and Harvard medical schools. Nazi doctors did more than conduct bizarre experiments on concentration-camp inmates; they supervised the entire process of medical mass murder, from selecting those who were to be exterminated to disposing of corpses. Lifton The Broken Connection; The Life of the Self shows that this medically supervised killing was done in the name of "healing," as part of a racist program to cleanse the Aryan body politic. After the German eugenics campaign of the s for forced sterilization of the "unfit,"it was but one step to "euthanasia," which in the Nazi context meant systematic murder of Jews.

The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide was written by Robert Jay Lifton and published in , analyzing the role of German doctors in carrying out a genocide. Throughout the book, Lifton provides quotes from interviews he conducted with SS doctors and with victims. The Nazi Doctors is composed of three parts. In the first part the book describes in detail the four stages that took place before the Holocaust. Starting with coercive sterilization, proceeding to the killing of children and then adults; medical reasonings were used to justify the actions of Nazi doctors. The progression of the killings began legally with sterilization laws and then turned into illegal actions that were permitted by the government.

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    The Nazi Doctors, by Robert Jay Lifton - Commentary

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    THE NAZI DOCTORS: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide

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