The Business of Death
July 12, 2000 4:46 AM   Subscribe

If this doesn't get some arguments going, then I'd hate to think what would.
posted by Mocata (8 comments total)
There's the writers side of the line. Then there is the other side of the line she is slamming (the Holocaust Industry). My guess is that truth is somewhere in the middle.

And IMHO, better a Holocaust industry, than a lot of David Irvings.
posted by tomcosgrave at 5:08 AM on July 12, 2000

It's a tough subject to criticize. If the facts that the auther presents are true (I'm very ignorant on this topic) than this is book is one that should be seriously taken into consiration. I don't think the authers intent is to downplay the holocaust, it seems like its the opposite. He's saying that people are exploiting the pain and slaughter of millions of people for their own benefit.
posted by Doug at 6:40 AM on July 12, 2000

>> And IMHO, better a Holocaust industry, than a lot of David Irvings. <<

And better we honestly seek the truth than either one of those, tom. Mocata introduced this saying, "If this doesn't start some arguments...": I for one hope that it does, simply because people will finally be expressing in public what has long been said in private (at least, I recall hearing friends, Jewish and gentile, in New York questioning those who "promote" the Holocaust years before "Schindler's List" made it impossible to even hint at anything other than the purest of motives). I don't doubt for a second that it happened, nor do I think I in any way underestimate the suffering that occured (frankly, I don't think I can even comprehend the suffering that occured). I think it is disrespectful of those who suffered and died not to question those who would take advantage of the Holocaust now.
posted by m.polo at 9:02 AM on July 12, 2000


It *would* cause arguments, if this wasn't so well-written. Apparently his family dealt with the Holocaust in a way of "protecting him". They suffered quietly, so he wouldn't grow up in an atmoshpere of "gloom & doom".

He knows the Holocaust happened... but he's angered by people "trying to make a buck" off of it. Which is quite commendable. I'm all for the Holocaust being memorialized... but capitalized???
posted by EricBrooksDotCom at 9:55 AM on July 12, 2000

The New York Review of Books ran a well-written piece (in a review, as is their wont--possibly even a review of this guy's book) a few months ago on the image and treatment of the Holocaust. Hmm. Nope, consulting a scribbled Post-It in my wallet, the books reviewed were Peter Novick's The Holocaust in American Life and Tom Seger's The Seventh Million. People interested in this subject may wish to do some off-line reading.
posted by snarkout at 10:58 AM on July 12, 2000

Here is a review of the book in question [via Arts & Letters Daily]
posted by m.polo at 5:43 PM on July 12, 2000

The "New Yorker" recently ran an interesting fiction piece that chronicled the story of a multigenerational "family business" centered around holocaust promotion...

Unfortunately, the "New Yorker" doesn't have a very robust web site, or I'd post a link to it.
posted by syzygy at 5:53 PM on July 12, 2000

I think there has been, maybe, too much attention given to the Holocaust when you consider how few people realize that Stalin killed far more people than Hitler did, (admittedly when you're talking about mass murderers it's hard to compare degrees of immorality, but you can at least argue their place in the history books) and many are totally unfamiliar with the killing in Cambodia (partly because many international communists such as Sartre did their best to keep Stalin's murders hidden)

I think Americans, and British, and French just like to hate the Germans. Why else would we force them to claim responsibility for a war started by Serbia? (The First World War, yet another page missing from the hisory books...)

posted by dagnyscott at 4:50 PM on July 13, 2000

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