U.S. Racial Violence in the Nazi Imaginary: The Case of Lynching
Lecture | December 1 | 4-5:30 p.m. | 201 Moses Hall
Jonathan Wiesen, Southern Illinois University
This lecture explores how Nazi policymakers and writers addressed racial violence within their own society by turning their attention to the persecution of African Americans. How, Germans asked, might Americans treatment of minorities inform discriminatory measures in Germany? How could Germany build a racially pure society absent the alleged lawlessness of the United States? This article takes up these questions by focusing on German views of lynching in the United States in the 1930s. Ultimately, the lynched black body became a symbol of a failed state across the Atlantic. If the Nazis were to design an effective racial order, they would have to avoid such visible expressions of extra-legal violence.