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HGS 541 - From Armenia to Auschwitz: An Examination of the First Modern Genocides

Though often studied as stand-alone events, the Armenian Genocide of World War I and the Holocaust of World War II have a fascinating and frightening relationship to each other.  Assuming students are already familiar with the basic facts and issues associated with the Holocaust, this study will focus on the history of the Armenian Genocide, with special emphasis on the role that Germany played in that event. We will seek to determine what the Armenian Genocide and the Holocaust have in common, how they differ, and how it came to be that 1.5 million Armenian Christians in Turkey and 6 million Jews throughout Europe were slaughtered less than thirty years apart, with Germany enablers in the former and perpetrators in the latter.  We also will examine the treatment of the Christian Assyrians and the Christian Greeks in Turkey during World War I to determine if the broader term "Christian Genocide" is a more accurate descriptor of what happened than the term "Armenian Genocide."  Finally, we will examine the phenomenon of genocide denial, as well as the U.S. press coverage of each genocide.

Note: Doctoral students should register after consulting with the Program Director.