German journalist, sociologist, professor and Holocaust survivor. Russian Wikipedia. BnF authorities. Eugen Kogon
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Return to Book Page. Nikolaus Wachsmann Introduction. Heinz Norden Translation. By the spring of , the Second World War was drawing to a close in Europe. Allied troops were sweeping through Nazi Germany and discovering the atrocities of SS concentration camps. The first to be reached intact was Buchenwald, in central Germany.
American soldiers struggled to make sense of the shocking scenes they witnessed inside. They asked a small group of former By the spring of , the Second World War was drawing to a close in Europe.
They asked a small group of former inmates to draft a report on the camp. It was led by Eugen Kogon, a German political prisoner who had been an inmate since The Theory and Practice of Hell is his classic account of life inside. Unlike many other books by survivors who published immediately after the war, The Theory and Practice of Hell is more than a personal account. It is a horrific examination of life and death inside a Nazi concentration camp, a brutal world of a state within state, and a society without law.
But Kogon maintains a dispassionate and critical perspective. He tries to understand how the camp works, to uncover its structure and social organization. He knew that the book would shock some readers and provide others with gruesome fascination. But he firmly believed that he had to show the camp in honest, unflinching detail.
The result is a unique historical document—a complete picture of the society, morality, and politics that fueled the systematic torture of six million human beings. For many years, The Theory and Practice of Hell remained the seminal work on the concentration camps, particularly in Germany.
Reissued with an introduction by Nikolaus Waschmann, a leading Holocaust scholar and author of Hilter's Prisons, this important work now demands to be re-read. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Theory and Practice of Hell , please sign up.
Be the first to ask a question about The Theory and Practice of Hell. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Mar 27, Lauren rated it it was amazing. Probably the most insightful book about the structure of German Concentration Camps I have read. It came highly recommended by the tour guide I had, when I visited Sachsenhausen - even though the book is about Buchenwald.
Some parts were difficult to read and it was quite emotional, but he gave such a matter-of-fact account of his time in the camp it made his book more than just a personal account of life inside the camp. The chapters on 'the psychology of And reading about the interaction the author had with some of the other prisoners and the guards, like SS Major Ding-Schuler, really made this book a great read and has made me want to research further, in more depth about these people. Really, it is a must read book for all history students and anyone interested in the second World War or history in general.
Shelves: history. My father-in-law gave me this frightening book as a gift. To read it is to walk into the ultimate nightmare of mankind's inhumanity to man.
Eugene Kogon did not set out to write a sensationalist account in order to shock and inspire pity. He only wanted to tell what he experienced and exactly wh My father-in-law gave me this frightening book as a gift. He only wanted to tell what he experienced and exactly what he saw in the camp. And this is exactly the way the book comes across to the reader.
It is almost like reading a court testimony. It is fascinating, harrowing, heart-wrenching and scary as hell. Sep 14, William rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Anyone who is interested in history. I was an eighth grader when I read this book. It scared me then, as well as now. While sad, it could not equal how disturbing "The Theory and Practice of Hell" had. It was so dispassionate, so cold, so matter-of-fact that it made Wiesel's experience seem like nothing.
After we read "Night" the class, each student individually, entered a writing contest about the Holocaust. All of my fellow students, I was an eighth grader when I read this book. All of my fellow students, so far as I know, wrote about "Night. I read something two years ago that blows this out of the water.
It is disturbing, a challenge to read, both because of the words used and the emotional impact. If you're thinking about reading it, do so. It will change how you think and it will make your life seem precious. Jan 17, Matt Glaviano rated it really liked it Shelves: histories , I found this book lying around after finishing In the Garden of Beasts , and thought that there was no time like the present to read it.
What was my motivation for reading a graphically detailed text about the mentality behind, and the day-to-day life in German concentration camps? Maybe, I found this book lying around after finishing In the Garden of Beasts , and thought that there was no time like the present to read it. Mostly, I just wanted facts to fill in vague notions.
I wanted to know what I was picturing when I imagined concentration camps. In the mass the individual becomes a nothing. He feels no more sense of personal responsibility. He feels dissolved and sheltered a he follows the trend of the whole, even into the abyss. It requires altogether extraordinary personal qualifications to rise consciously above the drift of a mass.
Kogon's book is a clear analysis of his experiences at Buchenwald, detailing the lives of prisoners and SS soldiers, the psychology of the incarcerated and the incarcerator and the attempts at survival made possible by a certain unity between the victims. It gives numbers, dates, stats, but it also gives you the personal judgement of Kogon, who was a prisoner himself for six years.
It is written with a steady hand, whilst never forgetting that it discusses a shaky subject. Definitely worth the r Kogon's book is a clear analysis of his experiences at Buchenwald, detailing the lives of prisoners and SS soldiers, the psychology of the incarcerated and the incarcerator and the attempts at survival made possible by a certain unity between the victims. Definitely worth the read for anyone interested in the period of the 3rd Reich.
Jul 25, Mark rated it it was amazing Shelves: memoir , history , holocaust. An excellent first-person account as well as third person analysis! All the reasons WWII should have been fought are here, as well as, all the reasons people ought to just give it up war, exclusionism, and genocide and get a life instead of thinking they can blink away an entire culture they disagree with.
Human d An excellent first-person account as well as third person analysis! Human dignity is something worth fighting for. You will well agree by the time you're done. Jan 01, Trae Johnson rated it liked it. I bought this book a long time ago.
I decided to read it over the summer. Not sure why?
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The Theory and Practice of Hell: The German Concentration Camps and the System Behind Them
Eugen Kogon 2 February — 24 December was a historian and a survivor of the Holocaust. A well-known Christian opponent of the Nazi Party , he was arrested more than once and spent six years at Buchenwald concentration camp. Kogon was known in Germany as a journalist, sociologist, political scientist, author, and politician. He was considered one of the "intellectual fathers" of both West Germany and European integration.