10 August 2018

BOOK: Mathew TURNER, Historians at the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trial (London: I.B. Tauris, 2018). ISBN 9781788310734, € 79,21

I.B. Tauris is publishing a book on the role of historians as expert witnesses during the Frankfurt Auschwitz Trial.


The Frankfurt Auschwitz trial was a milestone event in West German history. Between 1963 and 1965, twenty-two former Auschwitz personnel were tried in Frankfurt am Main. It was a trial that saw the engagement of four of the nation's leading historians as expert witnesses - Martin Broszat, Hans Buchheim, Helmut Krausnick, and Hans-Adolf Jacobsen - appointed by the prosecution to give evidence pertaining to the historical and organisational context of the Holocaust. Following the trial, the reports of these historians were published in a bestselling book, Anatomie des SS-Staates (Anatomy of the SS State) and Mathew Turner here investigates the relationship between the trial and this publication. In recent years, more attention has been paid to the intersection between history and law that accompanies historians' entry into the courtroom. Very little, however, has been written about this intersection with a focus on a single case study. Based on original research in several German archives and first-hand interviews, Turner addresses these connections through a study of West Germany's most famous trial, and the monumental work of history produced from the engagement of historical expertise in court.


Mathew Turner is a Lecturer in History at Deakin University, Australia, from where he gained his PhD. He has been a Guest Scholar at the Jena Center for Twentieth Century History in Germany.


Background to Frankfurt: the IfZ, Gutachten and the Ulm Trial
The Law Courts History: Pre-Trial Preparations
Giving Evidence: The Historians' Court? Or Historians Caught?
Judgement Day: Hofmeyer Reaches a Verdict
Publishing Anatomie: Gutachten to Chapters
Responding to Anatomie: Scholar React
Receiving Anatomie: Hoe the Book Made History

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