University of Minnesota
Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies


The Thinking Person's Guide to the Holocaust

The Thinking Person's Guide to the Holocaust

The Jewish Daily Forward compiled a list of valuable artwork and literature about the Holocaust as suggested by readers and several scholars as a way to mark Holocaust Remembrance Day and provide an entry to the subject.

The Jewish Daily Forward
April 28, 2011

A Way To Begin
With the help of your suggestions, Lawrence L. Langer, Michael Berenbaum, Joanne Weiner Rudof and Paula Hyman have compiled this all too brief list of writers, scholars and works. The list includes paintings, novels, memoirs, films, poems and graphic works, as well as historical studies. It provides a possible first step for those who would consider themselves Holocaust literate.

The hundreds of suggestions that we received, and the hundreds more that our consultants discussed, reinforced our sense that there is an almost endless supply of valuable and high-quality works of art and scholarship about the Holocaust. Our intention is not to be populist, exclusive or exhaustive (were it even possible), but to map a way into the subject.

Reading literature without knowing history is impossible. One cannot appreciate the literature of the Holocaust without grounding in its history. But conversely, one cannot understand the Holocaust without the insight of witnesses and great artistic or literary figures. This list, with a number of your comments included, is a distillation of a body of work that you have told us about and which is expanding every year. We have organized the following titles not as a definitive list, but rather, on Yom HaShoah of 5771, as a way to begin. -- Dan Friedman

For the list and more click here.