Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin
Lecture by Timothy Snyder
Date & Time:
11:45 AM - 1:15 PM
McNeely Hall, room 100
University of St. Thomas, St. Paul campus
Between 1933 and 1945, some fourteen million civilians were killed by the Nazi and Soviet regimes as matter of deliberate policy in the lands between Berlin and Moscow. Although we may know something about individual policies of terror, we have failed to grasp the scale of the killing, and to realize its geographical specificity. In a New York Times review of Timothy Snyder's recent publication, Bloodlands, the book that forms the basis of this lecture, Joshua Rubenstein, writes that
it was in German-controlled Soviet territory that the Nazis carried out the full logic of their murderous intentions. Within a half-year, the Wehrmacht succeeded in occupying all of Ukraine, Belarus and the Baltic States. And it was here, with the murder first of Jewish men and then of the entire Jewish populations of small towns, that the Germans began the systematic open-air massacres that resulted in the slaughter of two and a half million Jews in German-occupied Soviet territory, a proportion of the six million that remains hard to grasp.1
Jewish Book World reports that “Snyder’s book forces us to frame the Holocaust within a wider landscape of genocidal policies by both the Nazis and the Soviets without diminishing the uniqueness of Hitler’s war against the Jews.” In this lecture, Professor Snyder will describe and explains the policies that made the lands touched by both Nazi and Soviet power the most dangerous on the planet.
Timothy Snyder, Ph.D. is the Housum Professor of History at Yale University, where he teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in modern East European political history, and is a permanent fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna. He received his doctorate from the University of Oxford in 1997, where he was a British Marshall Scholar. Before joining the faculty at Yale in 2001, he held fellowships in Paris, Vienna, and Warsaw, and an Academy Scholarship at Harvard. Among his publications are six single-authored award-winning books: Nationalism, Marxism, and Modern Central Europe: A Biography of Kazimierz Kelles-Krauz (1998, second edition 2016); The Reconstruction of Nations: Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus, 1569-1999 (2003); Sketches from a Secret War: A Polish Artist’s Mission to Liberate Soviet Ukraine (2005); The Red Prince: The Secret Lives of a Habsburg Archduke (2008); and Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin (2010). Bloodlands won twelve awards including the Emerson Prize in the Humanities, a Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Leipzig Award for European Understanding, and the Hannah Arendt Prize in Political Thought. Snyder was the recipient of an inaugural Andrew Carnegie Fellowship in 2015 and received the Havel Foundation prize the same year. He has received state orders from Estonia, Lithuania, and Poland. He is a member of the Committee on Conscience of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, is the faculty advisor for the Fortunoff Collection of Holocaust Testimonies at Yale, and sits on the advisory councils of the Yivo Institute for Jewish Research and other organizations.
Cosponsored by the Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning in collaboration with the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Minnesota, the Arsham and Charlotte Ohanessian Chair at the University of Minnesota, the Aquinas Chair in Theology and Philosophy at the University of St. Thomas, the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of St. Thomas, and the Grants and Research Office at the University of St. Thomas.
Please also consider attending Timothy Snyder's evening presentation "The Politics of Mass Killing: Past and Present" at the University of Minnesota.
1Joshua Rubenstein, “The Devils’ Playground,” New York Times, Nov. 26, 2010