…“a group of eighty university graduates: economists, lawyers, linguists, philosophers, historians and geographers.”

As if these constraints were not challenging enough, Ingrao’s “social anthropology of Nazi emotions” aims to avoid what he regards as yet another bad habit of historians, namely their tendency to focus on institutions at the expense of studying informal social groups or individuals. As for the political scientists and sociologists who have explored these phenomena, he maintains that they have neglected the affective dynamics of ideology and the systems of interpellation inherent to Nazi belief systems. Ingrao, himself an archival historian, even argues against any simple privileging of archival research, observing that scholars of the Holocaust have embraced a “myth of archival exhaustiveness,” as if one could gradually approach the truth by amassing “all” the data. In this field, he reminds us, there are “too many archives,” more documents in more languages than anyone could hope to peruse, much less master, in a lifetime.

    Jan Mieszkowski o:
    „Believe and Destroy: Intellectuals in the SS War Machine”
    The Banality of Intellect: Christian Ingrao’s “Believe and Destroy”