1806 Chapters
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28 Diseases, Epidemics, and Suicide

Yitzhak Arad Indiana University Press ePub

In the camps there was no room for the sick. Those who fell ill and were not able to continue working and thus hide the fact from the Germans and Ukrainians were shot or sent to the gas chambers. The SS followed the prisoners around while they were working, checked them at roll call, searched them in the barracks; and those who seemed sick were taken directly to the Lazarett.

Among the prisoners in Treblinka were two doctors who were allowed to practice: Dr. Julian Chorazycki, who treated the German patients; and Dr. Irka, who treated the Ukrainians. It was forbidden for either of them to treat sick Jews. Despite this absolute prohibition, however, in the evenings, inside the barracks, these doctors did try to aid the sick prisoners and even administered whatever medicine they could filch from the infirmary. But this help was of small consequence, considering the large numbers of prisoners who fell sick.

In 1942, the “camp elder,” Galewski, was able to obtain permission from the camp administration for fifteen sick prisoners a day to remain in the lower camp and not go out to work. These prisoners were given numbers in the morning, which was authorization to remain in the barracks. In the autumn of 1942, even an infirmary was established in the living barracks. At first Dr. Chorazycki treated the sick in the evening, but, later, two prisoner doctors, Dr. Beck and Dr. Reisman, were assigned to this infirmary. But even this new arrangement did not solve the problem, because the number of sick per day greatly exceeded the number fifteen.1 In the other camps, Belzec and Sobibor, even this type of arrangement did not exist.

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14. Political Theology of the German Revolutions

Marius Timmann Mjaaland Indiana University Press ePub

The rise of the Peasants’ War in Germany 1524–1526 is intimately connected with the events of the Reformation.1 It was not the only uproar of peasants in fifteenth- and sixteenth-century Europe but definitely the most important one, and the only upheaval deserving the name of a revolution—in the modern, political sense of the term. It also produced one of the earliest charters in favor of more general freedom rights in Europe, the so-called Twelve Articles of Memmingen (1525). There were other manifestos before and after this one, but none of them had a similar influence on political events. Its principal tenor may be traced directly back to the palpable influence from Luther’s On the Freedom of a Christian (1520), the letter accompanying his written defense against the papal bull. The Twelve Articles open with an assertion of the right of each parish to install and depose a pastor according to their conviction. According to the first article, the pastor is obliged to preach the Gospel clearly and without any human additions, since the Word teaches “that we solely through the true faith can come to God.”2

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3. By What Authority? On Christian Ground

Stephen Gottschalk Indiana University Press ePub

Four years after leaving boston, when eddy was comfortably settled at Pleasant View, she told a visitor that there was one incident in the life of George Washington that impressed her greatly: his refusal to be made a king after the American Revolution.1

It was a familiar story. Patriotic Americans knew it well. In view of her own sudden departure from Boston four years before, Washington’s act of renunciation had special meaning for Eddy. Like Washington, she genuinely wanted to retreat into private life, but she also felt enormous responsibility for a cause beyond herself. Eventually she, too, found herself in a position of renewed authority, having involuntarily gained a new stature by virtue of a voluntary retreat from the center of affairs. Not that Eddy sought new authority in her decision to leave Boston, although that came in full measure within several years. What she sought was more the authenticity out of which that authority eventually would spring.

During the years of her life that remained to her after her move to Pleasant View in June 1892, she possessed and exercised that authority in increasing measure. It was, therefore, entirely apt that Robert Peel titled the concluding volume of his biographical trilogy, Mary Baker Eddy: The Years of Authority. Yet that authority did not come easily or all at once; it was, in fact, hard won, tested, and fortified, especially during the four years after she took up residence in her Pleasant View home. And it was with a considerable sense of assurance and command that she was able to declare in her 1903 reply to Mark Twain in the New York Herald, “I stand in relation to this century, as a Christian discoverer, founder, and leader,” adding, “What I am remains to be proved by the good I do.”2

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1 The “Final Solution”: From Shooting to Gas

Yitzhak Arad Indiana University Press ePub

The mass extermination of the Jews of occupied Europe by Nazi Germany began with the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941. Four special SS formations called Einsatzgruppen, which were subordinate to Reinhard Heydrich, head of the Reich Security Main Office (RSHA), advanced with the forward units of the German army. Their specific task was to murder Jews and officials of the Communist Party and political commissars in the Red Army. With the help of local collaborators, the Einsatzgruppen rounded up the Jews in the occupied territories of the Soviet Union—men, women, children, and the elderly—drove them from their homes to locations in the vicinity of their towns and villages, and shot them dead.

The locations selected for these killings were either natural ravines, antitank ditches, or pits specially dug for the purpose. The Jews were concentrated at assembly points and taken in groups to the killing sites. As a rule, the men were taken first, then the women, and finally the children. The victims were lined up either inside the ditch or at its edge; then they were shot. After one group had been killed, the next was brought over. In cities with a large Jewish population, the killing sometimes went on for days or even weeks.

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The Art of Creaturely Life: A Question of Human Propriety

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

The Art of Creaturely Life: A Question of Human Propriety

Norman Wirzba

There appears to be a law that when creatures have reached the level of consciousness, as men have, they must become conscious of the creation; they must learn how they fit into it and what its needs are and what it requires of them, or else pay a terrible penalty: the spirit of the creation will go out of them, and they will become destructive; the very earth will depart from them and go where they cannot follow.1

Human beings have lost their creaturely nature; this has been corrupted by their being sicut deus [like god]. The whole created world is now covered in a veil; it is silent and lacking explanation, opaque and enigmatic.2

In 1988 Jean-Luc Nancy convened a group of leading French philosophers around the question, “Who comes after the Subject?” Nancy wanted to assess the status of human subjectivity after much reflection upon it by thinkers as diverse as Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, Heidegger, Bataille, and Wittgenstein, but he also wanted to explore what such reflection looks like in the wake of a century punctuated by war, fascism, Stalinism, the camps, decolonization, the birth of new nations, American economism, and the proliferation of (increasingly uncompelling) signs. Far from pursuing a nihilistic exercise in the obliteration of subjectivity or the self, Nancy wanted to see how our thinking about subjectivity might be opened up to fresh thoughts and new possibilities. Given numerous philosophical critiques and a century of horror, there could be no simple “return to the subject.” We need to move forward to someone. But who? The question was how to name, narrate, and receive this “someone.”

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