The Rape of Jewish Women and Girls during the First Phase of the Romanian Offensive in the East, July 1941: A Research Agenda and Preliminary Findings

TitleThe Rape of Jewish Women and Girls during the First Phase of the Romanian Offensive in the East, July 1941: A Research Agenda and Preliminary Findings
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsGeissbühler, Simon
JournalHolocaust Studies: A Journal of Culture and History
Volume19
Issue1
Start Page59
Pagination59-80
Abstract

While several studies of the sexual violence perpetrated by the Wehrmacht in the East have been published in recent years, the violent sexual behaviour of Romanian troops during the Second World War has not yet been systematically examined. This essay outlines a research agenda and several theses on the topic and presents some preliminary findings. The sources analysed, mainly survivors’ testimonies, suggest that the rape of Jewish women and girls by Romanian soldiers was widespread and more common than rape by Wehrmacht soldiers. The notion that the rape of a Jewish victim constituted Rassenschande did not exist among Romanian soldiers. It is assumed that the lenient, at times even encouraging stance of the Romanian military leadership – or at least of many officers in the field – regarding the rape of Jewish women and girls led to more instances of such violent crimes. The Romanian troops’ plundering raids and their less rigorous chains of command provided the framework for the abuse of the Jewish civilian population in general and for rape in particular.

URLhttp://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17504902.2013.11087371
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