The Holocaust in the Baltic States: Between History and Memory with Natalie Biege

The Holocaust in the Baltic States obliterated a vibrant and diverse Jewish community that had existed for centuries. On the eve of Operation Barbarossa in June 1941, approximately 300,000 Jews lived within the borders of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. By the end of 1944, only a few thousand had survived the war. While the destruction of the Jews in the Baltics was top-down Nazi policy, the process of persecution and mass murder was accompanied by widespread local collaboration, thus adding another layer of horror and complexity to the events. Through reading and analyzing key historical documents alongside individual voices of survivors, perpetrators, and rescuers, this course aims to provide a historical and geographic context of the life and death of the Jewish communities in the Baltic States. By examining macro and micro-historical perspectives the course will shed light on the various German forces and local groups that took part in the implementation of the Final Solution in this region and explore the different processes that transformed inter-ethnic relations from neighborly to murderous, thus gain a better understanding of history often overlooked. While the focus on the Baltic States will be thematic, geographical, and chronological, the course will also place the region in its broader East European context.

Course Syllabus

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University of Haifa
199 Aba Khoushy Ave.
Mount Carmel, Haifa
Israel 3498838
Tel: 972 (0)4 8240111


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