Nazism, Dachau, and Historical Memory

Have you ever visited a place and the history of that place haunted you? Last week I had the opportunity to visit Munich in the German state of Bavaria. I enjoyed my trip, but I did not sleep well during my visit.

bavaria-mapMunich has a long history, one steeped in arts, culture, and innovation. Today, the people of Munich convey and celebrate their rich heritage in their museums, gardens, theaters, and beer halls.

However, one aspect of Munich's somewhat recent history overshadows the rest of its past and it is something that cannot be celebrated, but must be remembered: Munich is the birthplace of Nazism and the concentration camp system.

In this post you will discover Munich and Bavaria’s connection with Nazism and the concentration camp system and how this region of Germany works to keep the memory of its involvement in the Holocaust alive so that Germans will not repeat the past.


Author’s Note

This post has two parts: An overview of the rise of Nazism and the concentration camp system and my efforts to make sense of what I saw, learned, and how I felt (and feel) about it. As a result this is a rather long post, but I believe it needed to be posted in its entirety.


Part 1: Overview of the Rise of Nazism 

The End of World War I

At 11:00am on November 11, 1918, World War I ended.

Due to a lack of funds, materiel, and the disintegration of the Central Powers, Germany surrendered.

WWI_Victory_ParadeThe surrender shocked Germans throughout Germany. For years the Kaiser and military had told them that Germany was winning the war. The fact that Germans were fighting armies in places such as France and Belgium, but not in Germany added to their shock.

As part of the Treaty of Versailles (1919), Germany had to reduce its military from 4 million to 100,000 men. The unemployment of 3.9 million men combined with the stiff reparation payments demanded by the treaty to cripple the German economy.

This environment of fear, anger, and frustration gave birth to the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (National Socialist German Workers’ Party) or Nazi Party.


The Rise of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party

Before the military downsized Corporal Adolf Hitler, it tasked him with monitoring the activities of the German Workers’ Party, which Anton Drexler (an ardent German nationalist) had organized in Munich in 1918.

The nationalist message of Drexler’s party attracted Hitler and he began working for it after the army discharged him.  At first, Hitler served the party by drumming up support. His chief talent laid in gaining new members through his fiery speeches.

Hitler SpeaksHitler had a talent for oratory. He knew how to engage and energize an audience. He began by capturing his listeners' attentions with some wry humor and light banter. This technique allowed Hitler to read his audience. Once he judged his listeners he told them what they wanted to hear. Hitler became more animated as his speech continued. By the time he reached the portion of the speech where he talked about the Workers’ Party ideology both he and his audience were captivated and animated about what he had to say.

A turning point for the small German Workers' Party came when Hitler convinced Drexler to rent the large banquet hall in Munich’s Hofbräuhaus, one of the largest beer halls in the world. Hitler’s speech proved a success and from there he began talking at many of Munich’s large beer halls.

Hitler proved so successful at gaining new members through his oratory that on July 28, 1921, party leaders elected him chairman and gave him sole leadership. Thus, Hitler became the Führer of the German Workers’ Party, which had since became the National Socialist Workers’ Party (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei) or Nazi Party for short.

Bundesarchiv_Bild_119-0289,_München,_Hitler_bei_Einweihung_-Braunes_Haus-The Nazi Party became successful because of its strong support in Munich and because Ernst Röhm supplied it with military-grade weapons. During the late 1910s and 1920s, German political culture necessitated the need for party members to protect their orators; most political discussion took place in beer halls where attendees threw beer tankards and brawled. Hitler and the Nazis created a security force called the Sturmabteilug (Storm Detachment or Assault Division) or SA for short. The SA served as the predecessor of the SS.

In 1923, Germany suffered from hyperinflation. Frustrated with the government of the Weimar Republic, many Bavarian statesmen considered secession. As an ardent nationalist, the secession of Bavaria did not fit in with Hitler's plans for the republic.

On November 8, 1923, three prominent Bavarian state officials planned to speak about Bavarian independence in front of 3,000 people at the Bürgerbräuskeller in Munich. Believing that he had the support of the people and the force of his SA troops (and their weapons), Hitler attempted to seize power.

Hitler’s “Beer Hall Putsch” ended with the death of sixteen Nazi SA members, four Munich police officers, and Hitler's arrest and imprisonment for treason. The judge sentenced Hitler and his follower Rudolf Hess to five years in prison; Hitler served nine months before he was released for good behavior.

The Nazi Party almost died out but surged in popularity in both Munich and in other German states after the stock market crash in 1929.

In 1932, the Nazi’s secured enough votes that Hitler was allowed to form a coalition government. On January 30, 1933 he became Chancellor of Germany.


The Reichstag Fire & the Creation of Dachau

468px-ReichstagsbrandOn February 27, 1933, a Dutch communist named Marinus van der Lubbe set fire to the Reichstag or German Parliament building. Hitler used this act of terrorism as an excuse to ask Parliament to place Germany under a state of marital law while he sought out van der Lubbe’s accomplices (van der Lubbe declared that he acted alone). Parliament agreed and issued the Reichstag Fire Decree.

Hitler used the Reichstag Fire Decree and the emergency powers it gave him to quash those who opposed the Nazi Party. SA officers rounded up Hitler's political rivals and opponents (primarily communitsts, socialists, and Jews) and placed them in jail.

By March 1933, Hitler ran out of places to put his political prisoners as city and state jails overfilled with them. Munich Police President Heinrich Himmler offered Hitler a solution: just outside of Munich the town of Dachau had an abandoned warehouse and ammunition factory. Hitler could use this facility as a place to “concentrate” his political prisoners.


Dachau Concentration Camp

KZDachau1945The Dachau Concentration Camp opened on March 22, 1933. It had the capacity to hold approximately 5,000 men.

Initially, the camp fell under the purview of the Bavarian State Police. However, by April 10, 1933 Hitler's SS unit (which had replaced the SA in March 1933) oversaw the camp.

The SS imposed a systematic regime of physical and mental torture. My tour guide referred to Dachau as the “School of Violence,” the place where the SS trained its soldiers in the arts of torture and murder.

Prisoners at Dachau had no rights because, as they were informed upon their arrival, they were not human: They were pigs and scum.

As a forced-labor prison, the initial prisoners built the facilities of the camp. The first building they renovated/built was the “bunker.” The cells in this building had been converted from a row of double lavatories and outfitted with wooden plank beds. It quickly became a torture chamber.

New prisoners arrived at the “bunker” where the SS dehumanized them. The SS welcomed new prisoners with 25 lashes from a bullwhip. The SS often compelled other prisoners to inflict the lashes either with the offer of a food or alcohol reward or with the threat that they would be dealt a harsher punishment if they refused.

Dachau JourhouseWhen the prisoners completed construction of the camp it consisted of the jourhouse (entry gate and SS offices), the bunker, thirty-four barracks, a crematorium (complete with gas chamber), a maintenance building, and seven or eight watchtowers. Each barrack was designed to hold about 208 prisoners, but towards the end of the war they housed over 2,000.

Dachau was not a secret place, everyone in Germany and many outside of Germany knew of its existence. A “joke” or rhyme of sorts developed that warned Germans to watch what they said or they might end up in Dachau.

Dachau became the model by which all other concentration camps inside and outside of Germany followed in terms of prisoner housing and treatment. Dachau always served as a prison for political prisoners.

Although Dachau had a gas chamber in its crematorium, or “Barracks X," it was never used (no one knows why). The Nazis sent thousands of Jews to Dachau, but often the camp proved a temporary stop. The Nazis sent most of the Jews who arrived at Dachau to other “death” concentration camps outside of Germany.

Dachau Barracks XDocuments record that nearly 32,000 prisoners died at Dachau, mostly men as it was a men’s camp. American forces liberated the camp on April 29, 1945. Newspapers reported that the Americans liberated near 30,000 Jewish and political prisoners.

The sight of the camp horrified the American soldiers who liberated it-- men starved to skin and bones, many ill with Typhus, and thousands of bodies strewn everywhere as the SS had run out of coal for the crematorium.

Then there were the bodies in the so-called “death train.”

Three days before the SS surrendered Dachau to the Americans, they forced near 10,000 prisoners to leave the camp for other camps. The SS forced near 7,000 prisoners to march on foot; 1,000 of them died along the way. The SS crammed 3,000 prisoners into train cars, which did not make it far from the camp.


German Historical Memory

Dachau LiberationToday, the people of Munich do not hide from their state and city’s involvement with Hitler’s rise to power or from the atrocities committed at Dachau.

Officially, the German nation strives to prevent a reoccurrence of the atrocities that happened during the twelve years of Nazi rule by making sure that no German forgets their past. To this end, the German government funds the upkeep of all the remaining concentration camps, which serve as memorial sites (open free of charge) to the victims of the Holocaust.

Germany also requires all school children to visit a concentration camp. This is in addition to reparation payments that the country has made to victims of the Holocaust. (It took many years, but German businesses such as Volkswagen and BMW also offer reparations payments to concentration camp prisoners whose labor they purchased and profited from during the war.)

Moreover, it is illegal to display the Nazi swastika outside of a museum or to offer the “Hitler Salute." If you are caught offering the “Hitler salute” in Germany you will be arrested and fined one month’s pay for your first offense. If caught a second time you will be imprisoned for three years without hope of parole.

State and municipal governments also strive to remember the past. The Munich City Museum has a permanent exhibit on the rise of National Socialism in Munich.

Unofficially, I met several Germans who apologized for their past. For example, the day before we visited Dachau, Tim I took a trip into the Bavarian Alps. At some point our bus passed a site that evoked World War II and our guide mentioned how crazy Hitler was and offered an apology for the past.

The Nazis governed Germany for twelve years, a blip in the grand scheme of German history. And yet, today this blip overshadows the rest of its history. But neither the Germans I met nor the historic sites I visited hid from this past. Instead, they acknowledged the period of 1933-1945 as an awful, horrific time and they work tirelessly to ensure that all Germans keep the memory of the Holocaust present in their minds so they do not repeat the past.


Part 2: Thinking About American Historical Memory



I admit that I did not sleep well while in Munich.

I enjoyed learning about the German past, but the horrors of Nazism and World War II seemed ever present. I could not escape the period. Even when I visited much earlier historic sites many had been damaged or completely rebuilt as a result of Allied bombing during the World War II.

And yet, I was also comforted by the fact that I was mentally uncomfortable.

History can't and shouldn't always be comfortable to think about. It's the difficult and uncomfortable memories of the past that help to keep us from repeating it.

I think we Americans can learn a lot from the Germans' efforts to make amends for their past by keeping its uncomfortable memory alive.

As I toured Dachau, my mind couldn’t help but try to make sense of the atrocities that happened there and throughout the concentration camp system. As our tour guide described the physical and mental torture the SS inflicted upon the inmates my mind brought me back to early America. Much of the torture and abuse he described (and showed us pictures of) reminded me of the American institution of slavery.

American slavery was a system predicated upon the idea that Africans and African Americans were subhuman creatures. Slave owners and overseers forced slaves to work hard, sometimes underfed them, and inflicted an array of physical and mental torture upon them.

Comparative HistoryIn Dachau, the SS believed their prisoners to be subhuman. They forced them to labor hard, beat, or ordered the beating of, prisoners they thought willful, guilty of a transgression, or for some other contrived reason.

The SS employed kapos or prisoners to enforce order in concentration camp barracks just as some slave masters elevated slaves to oversee the work of their fellow slaves. Both slave overseers and kapos received special treatment for their work and received similar punishment if they failed at their job: re-entry into the general population they had helped abuse, which likely meant death.

My mind also drew me to compare the Nazi’s execution and concentration of political opponents and other “undesirable” peoples with the Americans’ treatment of Native Americans. From the colonial period through the nineteenth century, Americans viewed Native Americans as inferior peoples and worked to either eliminate their populations or concentrate them on reservations.

The American system of slavery and treatment of Native Americans are not exact comparisons for the Nazis' concentration camp system or the Holocaust they perpetrated, but there are enough similarities that I found my visit to Dachau and Munich sobering.

My visit to Germany made me feel ashamed. Germans acknowledge and apologize for their ancestors' complicity in World War II and the Holocaust and yet Americans refuse to do the same for their horrific past.

The United States has never offered an official, state apology for slavery and many museums and textbooks still gloss and whitewash over the horrors of slavery and American treatment of Native Americans. This is a difficult past and we need come to terms with it. I do not believe that our nation will ever work out its sectional issues or its problems with race until we acknowledge our difficult past.

Admittedly, unlike the Germans, we Americans have the luxury of avoiding our past. Slavery did not leave behind bombed out buildings that we had to rebuild and then walk by every day, at least not in the North and not in a way that southern Americans associate the damage of the Civil War with slavery. It is easy for us to ignore our uncomfortable history, but it is also weak and cowardly.

Many Americans see acknowledging the mistakes of our ancestors to be a sign of weakness. But, the Germans show us that the act requires strength and courage.




Getting Access: Massachusetts Historical Society Digital Resources

MHS-LogoDo you research or teach United States history? Would you like free, online access to manuscripts, photographs, and objects related to the American Revolution, War of 1812, American Civil War, and other important events through World War I?

In this post you will discover the treasure trove of information and materials included in 10 of the 41 different digital resources offered by the Massachusetts Historical Society.


Brief History of the Massachusetts Historical Society

Founded in 1791, the Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS) stands as the oldest historical society in the United States. It operates as an independent research library and makes its vast and impressive holdings available to anyone who cares to stop in or use its online collections.

Regardless of its name, you should think of the MHS as an archive of American history.

The MHS holds the papers of the Adams Family (including those of John, Abigail, and John Quincy Adams), Horace Mann, and other notable Bay Staters. But, its collections extend beyond Massachusetts.

Some of its holdings may surprise you, such as the fact that it has the largest collection of Thomas Jefferson’s private papers. They also have the papers of Francis Parkman, including his Oregon Trail notebooks.


The Digital Resources of the Massachusetts Historical Society

The commitment of the Massachusetts Historical Society to make its records accessible to all has prompted them to dedicate time and funds to creating valuable digital resources.

library-cloudAs of January 2015, the MHS has created 41 digital resources, which stretch in time from colonial North America through World War I.

The resources run the gamut from fully digitized manuscript collections to companion websites that contain highlights from exhibits hosted in the galleries of the MHS. Many of the resources include lesson plans, study questions, and materials for educators.

Below you will find brief summaries of 10 of the 41 digital resources. Each collection title serves as a link to that collection.

(Click here for listings for 39 of the resources and click here to explore the Civil War Manuscript and Photograph collections.)


Silence Dogood: Benjamin Franklin and The New England Courant

James Franklin published The New-England Courant, a newspaper independent of British imperial interests. Franklin published articles and essays that commented on society, current events, and government proceedings in a lively and satirical style. In 1722, James’ 13-year-old apprentice (and youngest brother) Benjamin contributed to the Courant’s commentary using the pseudonym “Silence Dogood.” Benjamin Franklin wrote fourteen "Silence Dogood" essays. This collection offers images and transcriptions of these early Franklin essays as well as full images of the newspapers in which they appeared.


Maps of the French and Indian War

This collection contains digitized maps that depict North America around the time of the French and Indian War (1754-1763). These charts illustrate how both French and British commanders used maps to determine their military strategy. Maps helped officers determine where to attack the enemy and what geographic features and areas they should attempt to hold or acquire.


African Americans and the End of Slavery in Massachusetts

A digital collection of 117 items held by the MHS. These items include manuscripts and early printed works that offer a window into the lives of African Americans from the 17th century through the abolition of slavery in Massachusetts (July 8, 1783).


Boston Massacre No FramePerspectives on the Boston Massacre

Read and examine materials that offer a range of perspectives about the Boston Massacre. Materials include diary entries, letters, pamphlets, newspaper accounts, printed depositions, orations, trial notes, seven images, and bullets recovered from the scene. This resources includes a comparison tool that allows you to closely view and compare any two of the seven images of the event.


Annotated Newspapers of Harbottle Dorr Jr.

Harbottle Dorr Jr. (1730-1794) lived in Boston. He owned a store, occasionally served as a town selectmen, and was a member of the Sons of Liberty. Dorr was also an avid reader and collector of newspapers. Between 1765 and 1777, Dorr collected 805 newspapers, which he arranged into four volumes. Of course, Dorr didn’t just read his newspapers, he annotated and indexed them. The Annotated Newspapers of Harbottle Dorr Jr. digital resource offers high-quality images of Dorr’s newspaper and pamphlet collection and his indexes. It also has a search feature that will allow you to search for topics that Dorr indexed.


Siege of Boston

This collections offers more than 300 pages of manuscript materials about the Siege of Boston (1775-1776). This represents more than a dozen individual accounts of those who were either engaged in or effected by the Siege of Boston. These accounts represent the points of view of residents, soldiers, prisoners, and Loyalists.


War of 1812

In honor of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, the Massachusetts Historical Society has digitized a selection of broadsides, letters, and artifacts about the war.


William Lloyd GarrisonBoston Abolitionists, 1831-1865

This collection comprises a range of materials held and preserved by the MHS that relate to abolitionists and the abolition movement in Boston. It includes issues of The Liberator as well as the first anti-slavery tract printed in North America, Samuel Sewall’s The Selling of Joseph (Boston, 1700).


The Case for Ending Slavery

This resource uses more than 50 primary sources (letters, diaries, songs, legal notebooks, and photographs) to reveal the complex nature of ideas about slavery and freedom that existed between the 18th and 19th centuries. Materials include lesson plans, study questions, and resources for educators.


Margaret Hall’s World War I Photographs

Massachusetts-native Margaret Hall served in the Red Cross during World War I. Between 1918 and 1919 she served at a canteen near the railroad junction at Châlons, France. While serving at this post, Hall kept a diary and took 294 photographs of the war. She compiled her journal entries, letters, and photographs into a typescript narrative, “Letters and Photographs from Battle Country, 1918-1919.” This resource will allow you to browse all 294 of Margaret Hall's photos as well as 29 additional illustrative items that sheincluded in her typescript.



The Massachusetts Historical Society offers an impressive collection of digital resources that will assist anyone who studies or teaches North American and United States history. Presently, the MHS offers 41 online resources.

The organization’s strong commitment to making its collections accessible to all undoubtedly ensures that it will continue to add to its impressive offerings with each passing year.


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What is your favorite, free online database?


Representing and Resisting Violence: African Americans, North African "Pirates," & Violence in the Early Republic, SHEAR 2014

SHEARWelcome to part 1 of my recap of the 2014 Society for Historians of the Early American Republic conference. The conference took place in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between July 17 and July 20.


“Representing and Resisting Violence: African Americans, North African “Pirates,” and Violence in the Early Republic”

Chair: James Brewer Stewart (Macalaster College)


Kathleen Kennedy (Missouri State University), “Trauma and Narratives of Slavery”

Kelly A. Ryan (Indiana University Southeast), “Seeking Justice: African American Resistance to Violence in the Northeast, 1780-1830”

Jason Zeledon (University of California-Santa Barbara), “American Manhood and the Barbary Pirates: Gender, Sodomy, and Women’s Rights during the Algerian Captivity Crisis”

Comment: Nikki Taylor (Texas Southern University, Houston)


Panel Summary

"Trauma and Narratives of Slavery"

Kathleen Kennedy explored how historians can use the narratives of slave men to explore the psychological trauma of slavery.

Kennedy began her paper with the story of Henry Bibb, a former slave who discussed being the father of slaves. Bibb fathered a daughter and swears that it will be the only child he ever fathers into slavery.

For Bibb the word “father” was “obnoxious.” Early American men defined their masculinity by their ability to provide for and protect their wives and children. Slave husbands and fathers could not protect their families because they had no rights over them; they had to watch while overseers and masters abused their wives and children.

Family of Slaves in Georgia 1850Kennedy contends that historians can use statements of grief by slave fathers to better understand slave grief and the violence of slavery. However, Kennedy warns that African-American writers did not always bear all in their narratives.

Former slaves like Henry “Box” Brown understood that their readers had expectations for what a slave narrative should read like. Readers expected to read about some of the blood and torture of slavery, but they did not want to read about the mental traumas that slavery inflicted. Therefore, writers like Brown could not represent the pain that they suffered as fathers—the pain of having to watch their wives and children beaten, raped, or sold.

Historians must also read slave narratives with an eye to what they do not say. Grief is the act of remembering while trauma is the act of forgetting. Trauma represents an inability to articulate true feelings, which is an endemic problem in all slave narratives.

Gender also played a role in how slaves experienced slavery and its traumas. Kennedy illustrated this point by examining the narratives of Harriet Jacobs and her brother James. Harriet discussed how she was not allowed to attend the funeral of her father Elijah. She remembered him as a man who taught her dignity. On the other hand, James describes Elijah as a man, but not a man. Elijah Jacobs had no authority. James Jacobs’ narrative also shows how enslaved men struggled with their conceptions of manhood.

Kennedy opted to skip over how enslaved people thought of their white fathers in order to use her last few minutes to discuss how enslaved men saw their role as fathers. Kennedy has found that slave men often talked about their decision not to become fathers or how they lived as fathers without authority; fatherhood brought slave men great joy, but this joy was tempered with great anxiety.

Former slave writers spoke about their children because they wanted their audience to know that they loved them. Today, the notion of parental love seems obvious, but in the 1840s and 1850s, these former slaves needed to make that point clear: To love is to be human.

Kennedy concluded her paper with a problem: Historians need to figure out whether slave men were really men. She suggested that we need to look for something other then progressive narratives because the trauma of slavery continued into the former slaves’ freedom. Freedom was not a happy ending, there was no happy ending to slavery. She suggests accounting as a way that historians might be able to better account for the trauma and grief.


"Seeking Justice: African American Resistance to Violence in the Northeast, 1780-1830"

LadyJusticeImageKelly A. Ryan: African Americans used the judiciary to advocate for their safety and security and to lay claim to, promote, and defend their rights as citizens.

Ryan contends that her investigation reveals another aspect of the burgeoning civil rights movement that emerged after the Civil War.

Ryan acknowledged the difficulties of investigating African American use of the judicial system. Many crimes went unreported and it can be hard for historians to identify race in legal records. With that said, Ryan has found many cases where African Americans brought suit against white defendants or cases where white plaintiffs brought suits against other whites for the injustices they perpetrated against African Americans.

African Americans wanted to bear witness in court. The act of testifying gave blacks a sense of their citizenship rights and as such they wanted to appear as respectable witnesses, especially against whites. Ryan reminded the audience that African-American witnesses faced ramifications for their testimony. White defendants or their friends might retaliate against black witnesses and their families.

Ryan found that whites played an important role in African-American court cases, especially in lawsuits brought to the court by African-American defendants. In many cases, the indictment records kept only white testimony. In some places blacks could not bring suits in their own names, so whites had to bring them to court on their behalf. This made it important for African Americans to identify white allies; African Americans were fully aware of the world they lived in and the reality of its discriminations.


"American Manhood and the Barbary Pirates: Gender, Sodomy, and Women's Rights during the Algerian Captivity Crisis"

Barbary PirateJason Zeledon contends that the legacy of the Barbary Conflict extends well beyond the various military skirmishes. The conflict shaped the way Americans saw themselves and North Africa.

Zeledon’s paper focused on 2 key ways that the Barbary Conflicts shaped American identity:

First, the conflict shaped and hindered the women’s rights movement in the United States.

Second, literature about the Barbary states shaped the United States’ diplomatic response to the conflict.

American literature about the Barbary states and captivity narratives portrayed Algerian men as sexually adventurous, men who preferred having sex with other men. This meant that American sailors not only faced hard, manual labor, but sexual abuse and exploitation if captured by the pirates.

The American view of Algerian men as “sexually adventurous” also led Americans to believe that the pirates could be defeated easily because Algerian men were lazy and inferior to American men.

American literature about the Barbary Conflict also hindered the American women’s rights movement.

American narratives about Algerians described Algerian men as cruel and abusive toward Algerian women. Algerian men never allowed their women to eat with them because they felt them inferior. They also believed that women lacked souls.

When American men read these narratives they praised their treatment of their American wives and daughters. Therefore, American men saw no need to help women promote their rights; compared to Algerian women, American women had a lot of rights and freedom.


Panel Comment

Nikki Taylor offered the official comment for the papers. She stated that the 3 papers raised many points that historians need to consider.

Kathleen Kennedy’s work shows us that we often try to define black manhood in terms of white manhood. White manhood does not adequately define or explain black manhood during the period of slavery. Taylor would like to see historians expand their definitions of manhood so we can more accurately describe the masculinity of African American slave men .

Kelly A. Ryan’s work illuminates the new study of African-American criminality. Taylor would like Ryan and other historians who work in this new field to answer several questions: 1. What triggered anti-black collisions where whites attacked blacks? 2. To what extent did African Americans experience success in their use of the justice system? 3. Who were the white witnesses? Why did they stand up for their black neighbors? Were they really black allies? And did they lose some of their whiteness by standing up for blacks?

Jason Zeledon raises excellent points about how early Americans perceived Algerian men and women. However, Taylor wants Zeledon to think more about the gendered natures of Barbary Warfare rhetoric. Specifically, Taylor asked Zeledon to consider how stereotypes are constructed and to do more to illustrate his thesis about women’s rights.


ThinkWhat Do You Think?

What do you think are the most interesting points raised by these papers?