Eichmann Before Jerusalem: The Unexamined Life of a Mass Murderer


Biography & Memoir

A total re-assessment of the life of Adolf Eichmann that reveals his activities and notoriety amongst a global network of National Socialists following the collapse of the Third Reich, and that permanently undermines Hannah Arendt's often-cited notion of the 'banality of evil'. Smuggled out of Europe after the collapse of Germany, Eichmann managed to live a peaceful and active exile in Argentina for years before his capture by the Mossad. Though once widely known by nicknames such as 'Manager of the Holocaust', he was able to portray himself, from the defendant's box in Jerusalem in 1960, as an overworked bureaucrat following orders - no more, he said, than 'just a small cog in Adolf Hitler's extermination machine'. How was this carefully crafted obfuscation possible? How did a principal architect of the Final Solution manage to disappear? And how had he occupied himself in hiding? Drawing upon an astounding trove of newly discovered documentation, Stangneth gives us a chilling portrait not of a reclusive, taciturn war criminal on the run, but of a highly skilled social manipulator with an inexhaustible ability to reinvent himself - an unrepentant murderer eager for acolytes to discuss past glories, who was vigorously planning future goals. 'Thrilling in its purpose ...there is no doubt of its importance: Stangneth's research, full of forgotten papers, lost interviews, and buried evidence, turns the conventional wisdom about Eichmann on its head.' Publishers Weekly 'A riveting reconstruction of a fanatical National Socialist's obdurate journey in exile and appalling second career in Argentina ...Stangneth masterfully sifts through the information ...A rigorously documented, essential work not only about Eichmann's masterly masquerade, but also about how we come to accept appearances as truth.' Kirkus Reviews


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Bettina Stangneth wrote her dissertation on Immanuel Kant and the concept of radical evil. Ever since then she has been researching a theory of the lie and has written widely on anti-Semitism in eighteenth-century and National Socialist philosophy. In 2000 she was awarded first prize by the Philosophical-Political Academy, Cologne, and she received the German NDR nonfiction book award for "Eichmann Before Jerusalem" in 2011. Bettina Stangneth is an independent philosopher and lives in Hamburg, Germany. Translated from the German by Ruth Martin

General Fields

  • : 9781925106176
  • : Scribe Publications
  • : Scribe Publications
  • : September 2014
  • : 233mm X 153mm X 39mm
  • : Australia
  • : November 2014
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 608
  • : 1
  • : TP