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1. firstname.lastname@example.org 2. David H Lippman <email@example.com> 3. Michael Mahoney <firstname.lastname@example.org> 4. "Megargee, Geoffrey" <GMegargee@ushmm.org> 5. Philip Eidelberg <email@example.com> 6. David H. Olivier <firstname.lastname@example.org> -----Message from: email@example.com----- While I bow to no person in my distaste for Holocaust deniers, I think the reported behavior of "a number of universities in Australia" is appalling and I hope no other institutions follow their lead. A quick look at Google Books confirmed my recollection that John Keegan has cited David Irving. So, too, has the late Stephen Ambrose, and John M. Collins. Donald C. Daniel and Katherine Herbig used him in a volume on military deception edited by John Gooch and Amos Perlmutter. Also, it should be noted that Irving did the English language translation of Reinhard Gehlen's autobiography, which is useful both to military historians and to intelligence historians. I'd hate to have some rule against use of Irving's work place Gehlen's book off-limits to those of us who don't read German. --Mark Stout Johns Hopkins University firstname.lastname@example.org -----Message from: David H Lippman <email@example.com>----- After reading what John Lukacs had to say about David Irving in "The Hitler of History" and several books on the Irving-Lipstadt trial, my view of Mr. Irving's works is this: I wouldn't touch them with a 10-meter cattle prod. The man is an apologist and advocate for Herr Hitler, working mightily to restore the reputation of a man who is utterly undeserving of restoration, while doing his best to defame the Allies in general and the Jews in particular. His works all go in one direction: adulation for Hitler and his works. From what I have read about the man, Mr. Irving seems to be a litigious and egotistical bully, with a lifelong determination to irritate people and glorify Hitler. Even his family stands apart from him. I would turn to Richard J. Evans' three books on Nazi Germany and Ian Kershaw's two-volume biography of Hitler instead, to cover those subjects. Best, David H. Lippman David H Lippman <firstname.lastname@example.org> -----Message from: Michael Mahoney <email@example.com>----- Simply put, being an anti-Semite does not make you a non-historian. Mr. Irving's works should be examined with the same scrutiny as any other historian. Any library contains works that are biased, some obvious, some not so obvious, but that does not make them "bad". The only question I have is "is this fact?" Thank you. Michael Mahoney, President Mahoney Research Library Simsboro LA Michael Mahoney <firstname.lastname@example.org> -----Message from: "Megargee, Geoffrey" <GMegargee@ushmm.org>----- Mike Yared passed along this inquiry from a law librarian: "I am trying to ascertain the current attitude in academic institutions, (mainly universities), to history students citing from the works of the notorious UK "historian" David Irving." The informal consensus here is that such citations offer the opportunity for a "teachable moment." There is certainly no point in citing Irving, since one cannot trust his writings. But as the author of the query points out, Irving's works are readily available, and they appear good enough to have fooled many learned minds into thinking that he does reliable historical work. Banning his works from academic discourse may simply make them more attractive, and in the absence of such a ban, I am not sure that there is any justification for penalizing students who cite those works. Instead, such citations would provide chances to talk about the falsification of history more broadly, while the professor is certainly entitled to demand that students find reliable sources and/or reexamine their conclusions. Geoff Megargee Disclaimer: the opinions expressed here are my own, and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies or the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. "Megargee, Geoffrey" <GMegargee@ushmm.org> -----Message from: Philip Eidelberg <email@example.com>----- Dear Sirs, I would like to know why there is all this academic pressure against citing David Irving. After all, not so long ago, he used to be widely cited as a well known historian. To the degree that he has deliberately falsified history, he does indeed merit criticism. But that does not mean he should be boycotted for his many legitimate contributions. If he is indeed an anti Semite (or anti any other group), that by itself is his personal right. If it offends people, they are perfectly free to criticize him on this point as well. If they feel he is guilty of libel, they have also the right to take him to court. But this is no excuse for yet another self righteous academic boycott, which of course necessarily includes professors exerting pressure on each other and on their students to "toe the line". Sincerely, Phil Eidelberg University of South Africa Philip Eidelberg <firstname.lastname@example.org> -----Message from: David H. Olivier <email@example.com>----- The problem with using David Irving as a source is a multilayered issue. The following must be taken into consideration: 1. works written by Irving himself; 2. works written by other authors on the Holocaust which use Irving as a source; 3. works written by other authors on non-Holocaust topics which use Irving as a source. 1. David Irving was a prolific author, who originally enjoyed a reputation as an accomplished historian. Naturally, his name would come up when books were suggested to librarians to purchase for collections. A quick search through the combined catalogues of Wilfrid Laurier University, the University of Guelph, and the University of Waterloo reveals no less than 32 titles written by David Irving. It is highly unlikely the average undergraduate student, never mind the average librarian, would be aware of the controversy surrounding Irving and his reputation. Therefore, chances are that, short of a mandated cull, those books will remain on bookshelves waiting for the unwary. The question is: do we take the deliberate step of requesting university libraries remove such books, in fear of their unreliable history continuing, or do we leave them for their historical relevance, not as works of history, but as examples of historiography? 2. Irving's reputation only gradually grew worse; for quite some time, his works were accepted as reliable sources. The bibliography of the second volume of Ian Kershaw's masterful biography of Hitler has no less than seven books and an edited collection by Irving. Do we throw out the baby with the bathwater and retroactively censor all books which may have been contaminated with Irving's increasingly untenable philosophies? 3. Irving wrote on subjects other than the Holocaust. Although Richard J. Evans writes about the problems with Irving's _The Destruction of Dresden_ in his own _Telling Lies About Hitler_, he says nothing about other Irving works, such as on the PK-17 convoy. Is all of Irving's history unreliable because of his views on the Holocaust? Perhaps this will start us thinking about reliable and unreliable history, and the problems it causes by remaining widely available. I've heard of the issues surrounding David Hamilton-Williams and his history of the battle of Waterloo, yet the book itself is a good read and is in many libraries. What can we do? What should we do? David H. Olivier Assistant Professor History & Contemporary Studies GRH 138 Wilfrid Laurier University Brantford Campus David H. Olivier <firstname.lastname@example.org> ----- For subscription help, go to: http://www.h-net.org/lists/help/ To change your subscription settings, go to http://h-net.msu.edu/cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=h-war -----