Constant commenter and friend Jack Crane weighed in on the “Is SB 1070 the new initial stages of Nazi Germany?” question and asked for some Holocaust book suggestions.
Here are some of the best I’ve read. Be forewarned, though, that these are heavy going emotionally and in terms of the sheer number of pages.
Lucy Dawidowicz’s The War Against the Jews. Dawidowicz is an adherent of the largely discredited intentionalist school that asserts that Hitler had a master plan he carried out inexorably starting at the end of World War I, but that should not take away from her book’s value. The early parts are helpful in understanding the historic antisemitism that waxed and waned in Germany before Hitler’s ascension.
Martin Gilbert’s The Holocaust. The remarkably prolific Gilbert has written on just about every other World War II-related topic, including being Churchill’s biographer and having several books of maps about the Second World War, so it only makes sense that he’d write a thorough and accessible Holocaust history.
Raul Hilberg’s The Destruction of the European Jews. This multi-volume work is the premier work on the workings of the perpetrators’ bureaucratic structures and machinations. Hilberg buried himself in archives for years before struggling to find a publisher for this groundbreaking work. He is particularly effective in showing how the Nazis used the process of legislation as the first step toward mass murder.
I know there are many others, and these are some of my top books on the subject. Other thoughts? Works?