Hitler’s Furies: German Women in the Nazi Killing Fields

TitleHitler’s Furies: German Women in the Nazi Killing Fields
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsLower, Wendy
Number of Pages270
PublisherHoughton Mifflin Harcourt

This history of German women in the Holocaust reveals their roles as plunderers, witnesses, and actual executioners on the Eastern front, describing how nurses, teachers, secretaries, and wives responded to what they believed to be Nazi opportunities only to perform brutal duties. This account of the role of German women on the World War II Nazi eastern front powerfully revises history, proving that we have ignored the reality of women' s participation in the Holocaust, including as brutal killers. The long-held picture of German women holding down the home front during the war, as loyal wives and cheerleaders for the Fuhrer, pales in comparison to the author's incisive case for the massive complicity, and worse, of the 500,000 young German women she places, for the first time, directly in the killing fields of the expanding Reich. She presents evidence that these women were more than "desk murderers", or comforters of murderous German men; they went on plundering sprees and brutalized Jews in the ghettos of Poland, Ukraine, and Belarus. The author draws on twenty years of archival and field work on the Holocaust, access to post-Soviet documents, and interviews with German witnesses to uncover evidence that has been hidden for 70 years.

Short TitleHitler's Furies
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