Geographies of the Holocaust
150 pages
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150 pages
English

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Description

Uncovering spatial patterns in Holocaust events


This book explores the geographies of the Holocaust at every scale of human experience, from the European continent to the experiences of individual human bodies. Built on six innovative case studies, it brings together historians and geographers to interrogate the places and spaces of the genocide. The cases encompass the landscapes of particular places (the killing zones in the East, deportations from sites in Italy, the camps of Auschwitz, the ghettos of Budapest) and the intimate spaces of bodies on evacuation marches. Geographies of the Holocaust puts forward models and a research agenda for different ways of visualizing and thinking about the Holocaust by examining the spaces and places where it was enacted and experienced.


1. Geographies of the Holocaust / Alberto Giordano, Anne Kelly Knowles, and Tim Cole
2. Mapping the SS Concentration Camps / Anne Kelly Knowles and Paul B. Jaskot, with Benjamin Perry Blackshear, Michael De Groot, and Alexander Yule
3. Retracing the "Hunt for Jews": A Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Arrests during the Holocaust in Italy / Alberto Giordano and Anna Holian
4. Killing on the Ground and in the Mind: The Spatialities of Genocide in the East / Waitman W. Beorn, with Anne Kelly Knowles
5. Bringing the Ghetto to the Jew: The Shifting Geography of the Budapest Ghetto / Tim Cole and Alberto Giordano
6. Visualizing the Archive: Building at Auschwitz as a Geographic Problem / Paul B. Jaskot, Anne Kelly Knowles, and Chester Harvey, with Benjamin Perry Blackshear
7. From the Camp to the Road: Representing the Evacuations from Auschwitz, January 1945 / Simone Gigliotti, Marc J. Masurovsky, and Erik Steiner
8. Afterword / Paul B. Jaskot and Tim Cole
Contributors
Index

Sujets

Informations

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Date de parution 19 septembre 2014
Nombre de lectures 1
EAN13 9780253012319
Langue English
Poids de l'ouvrage 16 Mo

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GEOGRAPHIES OF THE HOLOCAUST
THE SPATIAL HUMANITIES David J. Bodenhamer John Corrigan Trevor M. Harris editors
Locating the Moving Image: New Approaches to Film and Place Edited by Julia Hallam and Les Roberts
The Spatial Humanities: GIS and the Future of Humanities Scholarship Edited by David J. Bodenhamer, John Corrigan, and Trevor M. Harris
Toward Spatial Humanities: Historical GIS and Spatial History Edited by Ian N. Gregory and Alistair Geddes
Troubled Geographies: A Spatial History of Religion and Society in Ireland Ian N. Gregory, Niall A. Cunningham, C. D. Lloyd, Ian G. Shuttleworth, and Paul S. Ell
GEOGRAPHIES OF THE HOLOCAUST
Edited by ANNE KELLY KNOWLES TIM COLE ALBERTO GIORDANO
Cover and chapter-opening graphics by Erik B. Steiner
This book is a publication of
INDIANA UNIVERSITY PRESS Office of Scholarly Publishing Herman B Wells Library 350 1320 East Tenth Street Bloomington, Indiana 47405 USA
iupress.indiana.edu
Telephone 800-842-6796 Fax 812-855-7931
2014 by Indiana University Press
All rights reserved
No part of this book may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying and recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. The Association of American University Presses Resolution on Permissions constitutes the only exception to this prohibition.
The paper used in this publication meets the minimum requirements of the American National Standard for Information Sciences-Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials, ANSI Z39.48-1992.
Manufactured in Korea
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Geographies of the Holocaust / edited by Anne Kelly Knowles, Tim Cole, and Alberto Giordano.
pages cm.-(The spatial humanities)
ISBN 978-0-253-01211-1 (hard-back)-ISBN 978-0-253-01231-9 (eb) 1. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)-History-Case studies. 2. Historical geography-Europe-Case studies. 3. World War, 1939-1945-Atrocities-Case studies. I. Knowles, Anne Kelly, editor of compilation.
D804.348.G46 2014 940.53 18-dc23
2013046355
1 2 3 4 5 19 18 17 16 15 14
For our families
Contents
Acknowledgments
1. Geographies of the Holocaust Alberto Giordano, Anne Kelly Knowles, and Tim Cole
2. Mapping the SS Concentration Camps Anne Kelly Knowles and Paul B. Jaskot, with Benjamin Perry Blackshear, Michael De Groot, and Alexander Yule
3. Retracing the Hunt for Jews : A Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Arrests during the Holocaust in Italy Alberto Giordano and Anna Holian
4. Killing on the Ground and in the Mind: The Spatialities of Genocide in the East Waitman Wade Beorn, with Anne Kelly Knowles
5. Bringing the Ghetto to the Jew: Spatialities of Ghettoization in Budapest Tim Cole and Alberto Giordano
6. Visualizing the Archive: Building at Auschwitz as a Geographic Problem Paul B. Jaskot, Anne Kelly Knowles, and Chester Harvey, with Benjamin Perry Blackshear
7. From the Camp to the Road: Representing the Evacuations from Auschwitz, January 1945 Simone Gigliotti, Marc J. Masurovsky, and Erik B. Steiner
8. Afterword Paul B. Jaskot and Tim Cole
Contributors
Index
Acknowledgments
We owe much to a number of people at the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, particularly Robert Ehrenreich, Director of University Programs, and Michael Haley Goldman, Director of Global Classroom and Evaluation. Center staff facilitated our meetings at the Museum-starting with the 2007 summer research workshop that brought us together for the first time-and they provided data and critical feedback and made us feel welcome. Vital funding for this project was provided by National Science Foundation Award nos. 0820487 and 0820501. At NSF, we thank in particular program officers Tom Baerwald and Antoinette Winklerprins for their patient assistance and for their support for an unusual interdisciplinary project that stretched the bounds of GIScience.
Each of us has benefited from the support of our home institutions in various ways since we began working together. We would like to thank especially the Geography Department at Texas State University, in particular Phil Suckling, Chair of the department (2005-2013), for his strong support, and Jessica Schneider, who administered the NSF grant. At Middlebury College, Franci Farnsworth helped Anne navigate federal funding, and department coordinators Ann McLean and Susan Perkins made things run smoothly. Our work has also been supported by individual research and travel grants from Texas State University; Middlebury College; DePaul University College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences; Victoria University, Wellington; and the University of Bristol. Funding for publishing in full color was generously provided by the Stanford Spatial History Lab; the Department of Geography at Texas State University; and Middlebury College. Funding for the index and cover design was provided by the DePaul University Research Council.
Scholars at the annual conferences of Lessons and Legacies, the Social Science History Association, the Association of American Geographers, and the American Historical Association have offered extremely helpful comments and criticisms on our work as it developed. Each of our projects benefited as well from responses to our presentations at various universities and other institutions. Our students contributed to this project by honing our thinking about what it means to study the geographies of the Holocaust and how we can most effectively convey what we have learned in this project. Thanks to all the staff at Indiana University Press, particularly project manager Darja Malcolm-Clarke, copy editor Annette Wenda, designer Jamison Cockerham, Assistant Sponsoring Editor Jenna Lynn Whittaker, and Editor-in-Chief Robert Sloan. We also thank the two anonymous reviewers for Indiana University Press for their critiques.
Finally, we thank our partners, spouses, children, and all the friends who have shared our excitement and endured our absence while this project was taking shape. Scholarship is never a solitary venture; it can t be done without the love and support of those who know us best. To all of them, our deepest thanks.
GEOGRAPHIES OF THE HOLOCAUST
1
Geographies of the Holocaust
Alberto Giordano, Anne Kelly Knowles, and Tim Cole
THE HOLOCAUST DESTROYED COMMUNITIES, DISPLACED millions of people from their homes, and created new kinds of places where prisoners were concentrated, exploited as labor, and put to death in service of the Third Reich s goal to create a racially pure German empire. We see the Holocaust as a profoundly geographical phenomenon, though few scholars have analyzed it from that perspective. 1 We hope this book will change that by demonstrating how much insight and understanding one can gain by asking spatial questions and employing spatial methods to investigate even the most familiar subjects in the history of the Holocaust.
At its most fundamental, a geographical approach to the Holocaust starts with questions of where . Print atlases of the Holocaust, for example, have focused on the location of major concentration camps and Jewish ghettos, the routes of train lines used to transport prisoners to the camps, and the journeys of individual survivors, such as Primo Levi s path as he sought his way home after being liberated from Auschwitz. 2 Other examples include maps of where people were arrested, where they were sent, where they were murdered. The facts of location are basic to understanding any historical event. In the case of the Holocaust, such facts are exceedingly voluminous, because the Nazis kept detailed records of their operations and because many people who were caught up in the events as victims or bystanders recorded where their experiences took place.
Although location is the crucial substrate of the many geographies of the Holocaust, it is just one of the many spatial facets of Holocaust history. Our geographical studies have mainly focused on the spaces and places that people created, occupied, passed through, and endured-the material landscapes that were essential to the implementation of the Holocaust and inseparable from people s experience of it. While other scholars are currently theorizing the spaces and places of victimization in the Holocaust-work that we see as strongly complementary to our project 3 -we have sought to understand them by making them more visible. This is why choosing the scales of analysis was the first step in our project.
Scale, 4 one of the overarching geographical concepts that bind together our diverse case studies, is a key concept in human and physical geography, 5 where it is investigated with qualitative and quantitative methods. In our work, scale is operationalized primarily as a conceptual device, a way of framing particular aspects of the physical and social world in order to render its structure and meaning intelligible. In anchoring our perspective in this understanding of scale, we are aware that the term has a multitude of meanings for scholars today, particularly in geography, and that it has become much more than a quantitative construct, such as the scale of a map. Some regard scale as the material product of political, social, and economic processes: others debate its ontological status-does scale really exist?-or its metaphorical meanings. 6 For us, scale has great value as an analytical framework, as we hope the case studies in this book will demonstrate.
At what scale could one perceive, describe, and analyze the expansion of the SS concentration camp system? Ghettoization in Budapest? The mass murder of civilians in the East? The arrest and deportation of Jews in Italy? The construction of and evacuations from Auschwitz? Investigating the where of these Holocaust events necessarily means working at a variety of scales, for they took place from the macro scale of the European continent; through the national, regional, and local scales of individual countries, areas, and cities; and down to the micro scale of the individual body. By examining the Holocaust at different scales, the essays in this book begin to unearth the Nazis conception and execution of a comprehensive geography of oppression. This geography of oppression includes not only broadly territorial ideas such as Lebensraum , which distinguished Aryan versus non-Aryan space, but also the specific work of planning and designing Germanified cities, Jewish ghettos, and concentration camps. All of these concepts and actions involved physical destruction and construction of the built environment.
The Nazi vision for the Reich, the policies intended to realize it, and the resulting actions on the ground were all manifestations of the powerfully geographical notion of territoriality. Applying geographer Robert David Sack s insight that territoriality is the primary geographic expression of social power, 7 one can see the effort to establish territorial dominance as an impulse present at every level of the Nazis restructuring of European society. At the regional and continental scales, military conquest and the forging of political alliances redrew political boundaries, engulfed large territories in a greater Germany, and briefly claimed much of continental Europe as subject to or allied with the Third Reich. Territorial conquest and political alliances opened the way to expand the concentration camp system and allowed German planners to re-envision the East as part of a New Order where undesirable peoples would be replaced by German communities. At the scale of the city, territorial definitions and restrictions on spatial access divided Jewish from non-Jewish space in myriad ways. In ghetto cities such as Budapest, Jews were first forbidden to frequent certain caf s, cinemas, and other public places, and later they were required to live in certain buildings and allowed on city streets only during prescribed hours. Finally, Jews were forced to live in extremely confined neighborhoods-strictly bounded ghettos-where they were vulnerable to disease, deprivation, and in some cases deportation and execution. In the camps, prisoners lost control over virtually every aspect of their lives, risking death if they stepped out of line or failed to stand for the duration of a roll call. From the scale of the body to the scale of the continent, the Nazis violently imposed new rules that restructured daily life for victims, perpetrators, and bystanders by declaring-and enforcing-where people could and could not go, where and how they could and could not live, all depending on the social category to which they were assigned. The result was a geography of oppression that was ideologically, racially, and economically motivated; explicitly enunciated; and materially implemented at all scales of human experience.
This leads to another dimension of geography that we examine in this book: the meanings people assigned to space and place in the Holocaust. The twin concepts of space and place are difficult to pin down with any kind of precision or certainty. Yet place and space are fundamental to human emotion and experience. While these concepts are deeply connected to the physical environment, much of their richness comes from the mediation of human perception and our notions of value. Geographer Yi-Fu Tuan has defined place as a center of felt value. 8 This seemingly simple definition can be applied across all scales and kinds of human experience, from the intimacy of familial love to fealty to one s homeland. The more abstract concept of space, Tuan suggests, refers to containers of human activity-such as the space of a room or the spatial extent of a region-as well as emotional experiences ranging from the exhilarating freedom of open spaces to the dread of the unknown.
Social theorists have given much attention to the epistemological and ontological complexity of space and place, 9 and cultural geographers have particularly probed the politics of controlling space and defining place, whether through law, custom, or ideology. 10 The felt value of places in the Holocaust ran the gamut of emotional extremes, from the celebratory associations of Teutonic architecture and urban planning for those who designed Auschwitz to the terror prisoners felt upon seeing a concentration camp. The Holocaust transformed the meaning as well as the materiality of every place and space it touched. It created new spaces of confinement, such as box cars, and gave frightening new meanings to mobility. 11 The literal position that a Wehrmacht soldier occupied at a killing site became a reflection of his moral culpability as well as his sense of duty or bravery. The various tasks involved in killing a group of Jews in a Belarus village became spatially coded, with different meanings assigned to the cordon, the march, the shooting zone, the mass grave. Similarly, for prisoners sent on forced evacuations from Auschwitz, survival could come down to one s place in the microgeography of the column. Marching with a friend could keep one going, while becoming an isolated straggler could be fatal. Reduced to the physicality of their bodies, marchers formed mobile communities that retained many aspects of the camp despite their radical displacement outside the walls and barbed wire. Thus, the places and spaces of the Holocaust were both intensely personal and governed by multiscaled systems of ideas and the machinery that put those ideas into action. One of the most unusual aspects of our approach to the Holocaust is our conviction that spatial analysis and geovisualization can complement and help specify the humanistic understanding of space and place by exploring and quantifying relationships among things and people to discover and visualize spatial patterns of activity. This complementarity is at the core of our research method.
The research that gave rise to these ideas is situated in the confluence of several broad streams of scholarship that we collectively brought to this project, most notably Holocaust Studies, historical geography, and Geographic Information Science (commonly abbreviated as GIScience ). Although Holocaust Studies is by its nature a multidisciplinary field, few if any research projects have sought explicitly to merge disciplinary approaches, as our group of geographers and historians has tried to do during our collaboration. Scholarship in Holocaust Studies has considered some profoundly spatial issues, such as confinement and transport, but scholars have generally used conventional methods from narrative history and literary or cultural studies to address them. Since historical geographer Andrew Charlesworth s pioneering studies of Holocaust landscapes, few explicitly geographical works have applied geographic concepts to empirical case studies or focused on developing theoretical approaches to Nazi oppression. 12 Our approach, while often both intensely empirical and informed by theory, emphasizes the testing of methods of spatial analysis and visual representation. We use these methods to interrogate historical sources that in many cases have never been scrutinized for their geographical content. The results show promise for generating new questions and new knowledge. We also employ geographical methods to nuance and challenge the established historiography of the Holocaust. Much of the existing Holocaust scholarship has been based on archival research that analyzes the paper trail left by the perpetrators to explore questions of motivation and causation at a variety of scales. More recently, allied to broader shifts in the discipline of history, attention has been paid to victim experiences, in particular to gendered experiences of the Holocaust. 13 Chapters in this book offer insights into these subjects, as well as contributing to the least studied category of actors: those problematically dubbed bystanders. 14
Our focus on space and place does not, however, eschew chronology. 15 Narratives of events and change over time are central to several of our studies. What we emphasize, however, are the ways that Holocaust spaces and places changed over time, seeing those shifts in geography as potential avenues for exploring shifting motivation. 16 At times this is about changing patterns on the ground, but it is also about shifts (and mismatches) between what was planned and what was implemented, what was said and what was done, between policy and practice. Rather than rehashing canonical debates on decision making and structural conditions, we see new chronologies emerging from close geographical study of the Holocaust. The Auschwitz chapter suggests, for example, that paying attention to time as well as to space and place teases out a third spatio-temporal phase of construction that occurred between the better-known phases of planning and implementing mass murder. Mapping killings by the Einsatzgruppen in Lithuania over time suggests that their actions may have been more varied, and perhaps more random or chaotic, than scholars have realized. A strong sense of chronology pervades all of our projects, and in many cases is a key structuring device. Within the shifting landscapes of the Holocaust, we seek to uncover the often fast-changing experiences of the victims. In Italy, the centers first targeted for deportation were places of opportunity-such as Borgo San Dalmazzo, where foreign-born Jews from France were arrested trying to escape the Vichy regime-or medium- and large-size cities of traditional Jewish presence. In Budapest, invisible walls of distance within the dispersed ghetto restricted access for many people but were breached by some.
Our second realm of influence is historical geography and the kindred fields of cultural geography, spatial history, historical GIS (HGIS), and what is coming to be called the spatial humanities. These have given us models of interdisciplinary research that frame historical questions in spatial terms. 17 The reconstruction of past places and the study of how places have changed over time are central preoccupations in these fields, as they are in our studies of the SS concentration camp system, Auschwitz, and the Jewish ghettos in Budapest. Two other common themes in historical geography are the nature of historical communities and the ways in which experience becomes embedded in place. 18 These, too, figure prominently in our work, most explicitly in our studies of the Holocaust in Italy, Wehrmacht atrocities in the East, and evacuations from Auschwitz. Our attention to how the physical environment can influence experience and events stems from the prominence of environmental research in HGIS 19 and historical geographers reliance on historical maps as sources for researching landscape change. 20 From cultural geography, we derive our understanding of space as a complex social construction whose meanings include the multiple scales and settings of human interaction, the built landscape, and personal and social imaginaries. 21 Methodologically, we draw upon historical geographers tradition of combining archival research with fieldwork and quantitative analysis to develop portraits of regions, cities, or smaller localities as distinctive places or representatives of types within larger systems. 22 Work in HGIS has incorporated geospatial methods into that empirical tradition, with an emphasis on building spatio-temporal databases to visualize the patterns embedded in historical information and to analyze change over time. 23 The databases that undergird our case studies of SS camps, the Holocaust in Italy, the Budapest ghettos, and Auschwitz were designed with HGIS exemplars in mind. Scholarship in the spatial humanities generally takes a more open-ended, exploratory, suggestive approach. Scholars in this rapidly developing field seek to preserve and represent ambiguity, complexity, and the potential for multiple voices and interpretations, a view of history that has particularly influenced our interpretations of camp evacuations and Wehrmacht soldiers positionality. 24
The third major influence on our work, GIScience, was the initial impetus for this project. In recent years, massive, detailed compilations of information about victims of the Holocaust have come to light, some containing data on many thousands, even millions, of individuals. 25 Researchers at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) saw potential in GIS for managing and analyzing these enormous data sets. They sought our advice in 2005-2006, and our discussions eventually led to these prototype studies in applying geographical methods to the study of the Holocaust. 26 We have particularly focused on employing methods of spatial analysis and geovisualization, a term that includes cartography as well as other methods of visualizing and exploring geographic information. In this project, geovisualization and dynamic cartography have been crucial to exploring the making and unmaking of place and space as dynamic processes and states of becoming, while spatial analysis has allowed us to unearth spatial patterns and relationships inherent in the data. Whatever the methods used, a key step in the analytical process is determining the resolution of the data used. Resolution is defined as the smallest identifiable unit of analysis, whether in time or space: the smaller the unit of analysis, the higher the resolution. For example, monthly time series have lower temporal resolution than daily ones, and addresses of Jewish-designated residences in Budapest are at a higher spatial resolution than the cities where Jewish victims in Italy were arrested. This concept has epistemological implications, for what we can discover about the geography of a given phenomenon or event, and how we can investigate and represent it, is constrained by the resolution of the data. Furthermore, resolution affects which spatial analytical techniques and methods of geovisualization are appropriate, given the research objectives and the data available to the investigator. The range of spatial analytical techniques available is in fact very broad, and it is important to choose among these techniques with a clear understanding of their assumptions and limitations. From this perspective, the objective of our work is methodological as well as pedagogical: we aim to explain and to demystify techniques that are unfamiliar to most researchers outside of GIScience. 27
These three broad realms of scholarship have shaped each of our studies in particular ways, with varying disciplinary and methodological emphasis. In every case, however, we became acutely aware of the creative, if sometimes difficult, tension between the spatial models we created and the historical evidence from which they were built. Spatial analytical methods and geovisualization inevitably involve models that abstract reality. In a map, the spherical Earth becomes a two-dimensional Cartesian plane that at best simulates the look of three-dimensional reality. Every GIS database is based on mathematical and geometrical models of reality. 28 By using these methods, we do not claim to be describing the reality of experience; rather, we have done something different by modeling the physical conditions of the reality in which victims, perpetrators, and bystanders operated, in order to ask new questions and see historical circumstances in a new light. In the context of the Holocaust, models are particularly useful as complements to textual sources such as survivor memoirs and testimonies. Memoirs and testimonies contain detailed descriptions of places, people, and events, but the degree to which they can be generalized is problematic; on the other hand, well-defined models describe and discover characteristics of the spaces in which history took place that no single testimony can provide. Models can be used to frame testimonies, while testimonies bring to life what models can describe only in broad strokes. Models have also helped us empirically test a number of conceptual binaries that historians have often discussed only metaphorically, including space and place, distance and proximity, stasis and movement, visibility and invisibility, core and periphery . Across many of the chapters, models have also allowed us to explore issues of vulnerability, specifically how the location of victims and perpetrators made some people, potentially or in actuality, more vulnerable than others. We believe the combined use of models and more traditional careful reading of archival sources holds great potential to give us a richer understanding of the Holocaust.
Geography, as we practice it, is a visual way of knowing, 29 and indeed many of our discoveries and insights have come from the visualization of geographical and historical information. Visualizing has the potential to uncover things that may otherwise be invisible within textual sources. All the historians in our research group have had eureka moments when they saw information visualized for the first time. One of these for Tim Cole came when Alberto Giordano ran spatial analysis of the critical weeks in the middle of June 1944 when first one list of ghetto houses was issued and then, a week later, another list. What they discovered was that the shape of the ghetto actually changed little, contrary to Tim s expectations. A similar revelation came when Paul Jaskot first saw an animation of construction at Auschwitz-Birkenau from May 1943 to April 1944 created by Chester Harvey from architecture plans, SS records, and aerial photographs. The animation worked a transformation in Paul s architectural-historian s imagination. Suddenly, he saw Auschwitz not as an accomplished fact, but as a site actively under construction-with all the attendant activity, coming and going, change to the built environment, and possible moments of chaos.
These examples illustrate how powerful maps can be as tools to acquire new levels of insight into how the Holocaust was put into place. However, we would not want anyone to read our maps as the totalizing gaze of the perpetrator. Rather than faithfully rendering this perspective, we see the act of mapping as, in part, a critical engagement with the worlds envisioned by the perpetrators. For example, by constructing a building-level model of Auschwitz based on Nazi architectural plans and other documents in the Zentralbauleitung archives, we have begun to disambiguate the Auschwitz that was actually constructed from the Auschwitz of the planners dreams. Clarifying differences between the ideal and the real has become a recurring theme in our research.
Moreover, because GIS provides a single platform for integrating and jointly analyzing most of our source material, we are able to ask questions from multiple perspectives or questions that interrogate multiple phenomena. The spaces we have begun to reconstruct were inhabited by all members of the wartime population. A camp like Auschwitz or ghettos like those in Budapest may have been built by perpetrators, but they were lived in by victims and witnessed by bystanders. These conventional divisions are problematic. Mapping prompts one to think about all the activities in which individuals engaged, and the associated physical and moral positions. At Auschwitz, for example, did camp guards briefly become bystanders when they left their posts to relax in one of the camp saunas, and did they remain bystanders, at least for a moment, when they stepped back into the space of the camp proper within view of a crematorium? In his study of Wehrmacht involvement in mass killings in Belarus, Waitman Beorn suggests that location need not be a mathematical or positivistic concept. It can in fact be deeply ambivalent, subjective, and suggestive.
This book and our entire project have their genesis in a radical moment of interdisciplinary collaboration. Brought together under the auspices of a USHMM Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies Summer Research Workshop in August 2007, we quickly shifted from giving seminar papers to working collaboratively on a number of experimental projects during an intensive week when we began to learn the art of what we later joked was interspecies communication. Checking our egos at the door -as one of our colleagues later reflected-we began to work in small interdisciplinary teams that have persisted throughout the remaining years of the project and into this collection of essays. The six chapters that are the result of our collaboration range widely not only in scale, subject matter, and method, but also in their purpose and findings. Some of the chapters are speculative investigations into the possibilities of seeing the Holocaust from a geographical perspective. Others are highly empirical case studies that offer particular findings based on quantitative analysis. In both cases, the chapters do not delve deeply into the methodological issues raised by the research, although each chapter includes a section called Spotlight on Methods in which the authors describe their methods of inquiry. We do not mean to give readers the impression that the research behind these chapters was unproblematic or that we approached it uncritically. In fact, quite the opposite is true: this effort has been a challenge at times, but we found it essential for producing truly interdisciplinary work. All of our case studies are collaborations between at least one Holocaust historian and technically expert geographer. We chose to research, write, and edit collaboratively, though we knew it would be difficult, given the differences in our training and disciplinary habits, which are anchored in literatures and styles as diverse as feminist theory and GIScience. Our drafts went through several iterations as we tried to find each chapter s unique balance between historiography and geographical analysis. At times it felt like a three-legged sack race. Deciding what matters most, and what constitutes adequate explanation, has not been easy, but we learn so much from each other that we continue to embrace the challenges of truly interdisciplinary practice.
For all their variety, however, the chapters share a common structure and general approach. In each chapter, the authors situate their key spatial questions in the context of relevant scholarship. The analysis is based upon both visual and textual evidence, for maps, archival photographs, digital models of the built environment, and spatial diagrams are essential for interrogating and representing the spaces and places of the Holocaust. Each chapter addresses some combination of the core geographic concepts we have identified here, and each chapter focuses on a particular scale. Chapter 2 looks at the Holocaust from the continental scale, asking how the early concentration camps and the SS camp system developed over space and time, with a special focus on the emergence of labor camps during the last two years of World War II. This study is based on a data set of SS camps developed by researchers in the Registry of Survivors (Holocaust Victims and Survivors Resource Center) at USHMM for use in making maps for volume 1 of the Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933-1945 . 30 The key methods here are thematic mapping of data explored through animated cartography and the visual overlay of related themes, specifically exploring the relationship between territorial boundary changes and the establishment of concentration camps. Chapter 3 moves to the regional scale of Italy in examining the spatio-temporal patterns of arrest, transportation, and ultimately deportation of Jews from Italy to Auschwitz, starting from a database of more than nine thousand individual arrests that was painstakingly compiled and published in Italy. This is the first geographical analysis of that compilation in the historiography of the Holocaust in Italy. Chapter 4 asks how a geographical approach might shed new light on Einsatzgruppen and Wehrmacht atrocities in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union in 1941. The answer comes from a combination of methods applied at the subregional scale of Lithuania and Belarus and the local scale of targeted communities. Mapping the location of military actions against civilian populations changes the received view of German forces marching inexorably through the East. Using fieldwork at known killing sites to study individuals testimony in situ also leads to suggestive correlations between where a soldier physically stood and his moral position as a participant in genocide. Chapter 5 steps down to the scale of the city, with a detailed examination of the shifting landscape of ghettoization in Budapest from May to November 1944. For this case study, the authors constructed an historical GIS that located thousands of Jewish residences according to their street address, a process that included translating textual records into digital map layers as well as verifying addresses through fieldwork in the city. The authors used a variety of spatial analytical techniques to determine the extent to which changes in ghettoization actually affected Jews and non-Jews everyday lives, ultimately moving to the level of interaction on city streets during the hours when Jews were allowed to leave their homes. Chapter 6 takes us to Auschwitz. Here, the scale of spatial modeling and analysis comes down to individual buildings. A digital model of the whole built environment, including both the concentration camp and the spaces used and inhabited by the perpetrators, gives rise to a new conception of Auschwitz as a city, all of whose complex functions were part of the Nazis imperial, genocidal mission. Adding time to the camp model through map animation of a buildings database suggests that the construction of Birkenau and the SS environs as a whole may have created chaotic periods that enabled prisoner escapes. Seeing which structures were built according to plan or in response to the exigencies of genocide further complicates our understanding of the built environment. Chapter 7 follows prisoners out of Auschwitz on evacuation marches that were a final, grueling test for those who had survived to January 1945. This chapter focuses on the intimate scale of individual bodies in space and time. The authors both map personal testimony to reconstruct the routes of evacuations and transmute recorded memories into visual representations of emotional experience.
The chapters draw upon a very wide range of archival sources. While we have extracted much geographical information from the paperwork produced by the perpetrators in reports, orders, plans, and postwar testimony, to borrow Saul Friedl nder s phrase, the book as a whole seeks to offer an integrated historical geography that also draws on survivors voices in memoir and oral history accounts, as well as a great deal of contextual material from historical and present-day topographical maps, photographs, aerial imagery, census data, official publications, and fieldwork. 31 And we bring front and center the characters that are missing from so many histories, even of the Holocaust: the spaces and places where history took resonant, material form.
We realize that our subject and our perspective are unusual and disconcerting for some. Our moral concern, however, springs from the same questions that drive most Holocaust scholars: How could this have happened? How did it happen? What we add to the moral universe of Holocaust Studies are the places where the Holocaust was enacted-places people made or where they found themselves-and the spaces over which the Nazis and their allies exercised power, spaces that we have sought to analyze and visualize. Throughout we have remained very much aware that our maps and models are human constructions that embody the limitations of our sources and our own fallible decisions. As we wrote the chapters, we were constantly aware of these limitations, which is why we discuss database construction and analytical methods at length: we want readers to understand the constraints and issues raised by our visual representations and analytical methods. 32 We try never to mistake the map for what it represents. We explain what each visualization is meant to represent, and in many cases what it omits. The tremendous variety of forms, scales, design approaches, and modes of exploring and representing geographical information in our book (as maps, plans, spatial diagrams, oblique and planimetric views, and so forth) also signals our belief that no one kind of representation fits all historical subjects. There are as many ways to map as there are ways to write. We are empiricists, not positivists.
Another challenge we have grappled with in this project has been the effort to communicate effectively through visual means without slipping into aesthetic traps of what makes a good map or striking visual. In addition to our desire to retain the individual vision and creativity of each case study, this is why each chapter has a distinctive look. We did not want to impose a single visual style on the book and thereby imply that we embrace a single aesthetic approach to the Holocaust. 33 We urge the reader to approach this book as they might Art Spiegelman s Maus , where the coexistence of text and visuals allows Spiegelman to refer to both the past (his father s wartime experiences) and the present (the moment of retelling) at one and the same time. 34 We attempt something of a similar simultaneity as the reader toggles between historical narrative, methodological explanations, maps and other visuals, and passages of historical analysis as they explore the spatiality of the Holocaust at a variety of scales. Writing this way, as in the case of Maus , we seek to develop the kind of self-reflectivity that James Young urges on scholars in his admonition to write received histories (and geographies) of the Holocaust that lay bare the act of receiving or reconstructing past time and past place. 35
Our quest is not without risks. In several of the case studies, we employ quantitative techniques to study human suffering. This raised concern among some academic geographers and Holocaust and Jewish Studies scholars who saw presentations of our work in progress. Their reaction may have been prompted in part by the unfamiliarity of quantitative analysis in Holocaust Studies. We appreciate the difficulty of imposing the distance of numerical abstraction upon the visceral, deeply emotional experiences that victims of the Holocaust endured. At the same time, we have found that quantitative analysis of large data sets unearths spatial and temporal patterns that provide very helpful frameworks for interpreting personal stories and establishing relationships between them. It is a difficult balance to strike, and one we have struggled with throughout our work, as the chapters will undoubtedly show.
Our struggles are not unique; they reflect the enduring difficulty of bridging disciplinary divides. GIScientists can be unaware of the complexity of translating historical sources into the essentially mathematical, binary language of GIS, and sometimes tend to trivialize the process of building a historical GIS. Humanists who view historical GIS as mere technical method may not realize that the disciplines of geography and GIScience give the tools of GIS their meaning, and that learning a few analytical techniques without learning about their intellectual context is unlikely to produce work of depth and substance. We hope that readers of all backgrounds will find among these studies ideas, concepts, and approaches that stimulate their geographical and historical imaginations. Ultimately, we see the work offered here as a critical intervention that helps establish the foundation for the systematic scholarly exploration of the geographies of the Holocaust.
Notes
1 . See the pioneering work of Andrew Charlesworth, Towards a Geography of the Shoah, Journal of Historical Geography 18, no. 4 (1992): 464-69.
2 . Martin Gilbert, Atlas of the Holocaust , 3rd ed. (London: Routledge, 2002), 240. Gilbert s atlas includes many routes of individuals and groups. See also United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Historical Atlas of the Holocaust (New York: Macmillan, 1996); and Michael Freeman, Atlas of Nazi Germany: A Political, Economic, and Social Anatomy of the Third Reich , 2nd ed. (London: Longman, 1995), 191-96.
3 . David Clarke, Marcus Doel, and Francis McDonough, Holocaust Topologies: Singularity, Politics, Space, Political Geography 15, nos. 6-7 (1996): 475-89; Paolo Giaccaria and Claudio Minca, Topographies/Topologies of the Camp: Auschwitz as a Spatial Threshold, Political Geography 30, no.1 (2011): 3-12; Paolo Giaccaria and Claudio Minca, Nazi Biopolitics and the Dark Geographies of the Selva, Journal of Genocide Research 13, nos. 1-2 (2011): 67-84; Trevor J. Barnes and Claudio Minca, Nazi Spatial Theory: The Dark Geographies of Carl Schmitt and Walter Christaller, Annals of the Association of American Geographers 103, no. 3 (2013): 669-87; Paolo Giaccaria and Claudio Minca, eds., Hitler s Geographies: The Spatialities of the Third Reich (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, forthcoming).
4 . Scale is a fundamental geographical construct. For a review, see Eric Sheppard and Robert B. McMaster, eds., Scale Geographic Inquiry (Malden, Mass.: Blackwell, 2004); and Andrew Herod, Scale (London: Routledge, 2011).
5 . Nicholas J. Clifford et al., eds., Key Concepts in Geography , 2nd ed. (Los Angeles: Sage, 2009).
6 . For an introduction to the topic, see Herod, Scale . See also B. Jessop et al., Theorizing Sociospatial Relations, Environment and Planning D 26, no. 3 (2008): 389-401; Kevin Cox, Spaces of Dependence, Spaces of Engagement and the Politics of Scale; or, Looking for Local Politics, Political Geography 17, no. 1 (1998): 1-23; Katherine Jones, Scale as Epistemology, Political Geography 17, no. 1 (1998): 25-28; Neil Brenner, The Limits to Scale? Methodological Reflections on Scalar Structuration, Progress in Human Geography 25, no. 4 (2001): 591-614; and Sallie Marston, John Paul Jones, and Keith Woodward, Human Geography without Scale, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers , n.s., 30 (2005): 416-32.
7 . Robert David Sack, Human Territoriality (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986).
8 . Yi-Fu Tuan, Space and Place: The Perspective of Experience (1977; reprint, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2001).
9 . Leading examples include Edward S. Casey, Getting Back into Place: Toward a Renewed Understanding of the Place-World , 2nd ed. (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2009) and The Fate of Place: A Philosophical History (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997); Jeff E. Malpas, Place and Experience: A Philosophical Topography (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999) and Heidegger s Topology: Being, Place, World (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2008); and Doreen Massey, For Space (London: Sage, 2005).
10 . For broad overviews and concepts, see Tim Cresswell, Place: A Short Introduction (Malden, Mass.: Blackwell, 2004); Don Mitchell, Cultural Geography: A Critical Introduction (Malden, Mass.: Blackwell, 2000); and David Sibley et al., eds., Cultural Geography: A Critical Dictionary of Key Concepts (London: I. B. Tauris, 2005). A good introduction to legal geography is Nicholas K. Blomley, David Delaney, and Richard T. Ford, eds., The Legal Geographies Reader: Law, Power, and Space (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2001). Among David Harvey s books on the spatial relations inherent in the material and ideological dimensions of capitalism, see particularly The Limits to Capital , rev. ed. (London: Verso, 2007); Spaces of Capital: Towards a Critical Geography (New York: Routledge, 2001); and The Enigma of Capital and the Crises of Capitalism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010). For a brief introduction, see David Harvey, Spaces of Global Capitalism: Towards a Theory of Uneven Geographical Development (London: Verso, 2006).
11 . Simone Gigliotti, The Train Journey: Transit, Captivity, and Witnessing in the Holocaust (London: Berghahn, 2009).
12 . Broadly conceptual works include Charlesworth, Towards a Geography of the Shoah ; and Andrew Charlesworth, The Topography of Genocide, in The Historiography of the Holocaust , edited by Dan Stone (Houndmills, Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004), 216-52. More empirical case studies include Tim Cole and Graham Smith, Ghettoization and the Holocaust: Budapest, 1944, Journal of Historical Geography 21, no. 3 (1995): 300-316; Tim Cole, Holocaust City: The Making of a Jewish Ghetto (New York: Routledge, 2003) and Traces of the Holocaust: Journeying In and Out of the Ghettos (London: Continuum, 2011); and Joshua Hagen and Robert C. Ostergren, Building Nazi Germany: Place, Space, Architecture, and Ideology (Lanham, Md.: Rowman Littlefield, under contract). Theoretical studies by geographers have been particularly inspired by the work of Giorgio Agamben; see, for example, Giaccaria and Minca, Topographies/ Topologies of the Camp and Hitler s Geographies .
13 . See Marion Kaplan, Between Dignity and Despair: Jewish Life in Nazi Germany (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999); Dalia Ofer and Lenore Weitzman, eds., Women in the Holocaust (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1999); and Elizabeth Baer and Myrna Goldenberg, eds., Experience and Expression: Women, the Nazis, and the Holocaust (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2003).
14 . Tim Cole, Writing Bystanders into Holocaust History in More Active Ways: Non-Jewish Engagement with Ghettoization, Hungary, 1944, Holocaust Studies 11, no. 1 (2005): 55-74.
15 . Works in support of the possibilities and necessities of combining the two include Philip Ethington, Placing the Past: Groundwork for a Spatial Theory of History, Rethinking History 11, no. 4 (2007): 465-93; Alan Baker, Geography and History: Bridging the Divide (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003); and particularly Thomas Bender, Theory, Experience, and the Motion of History, Rethinking History 11, no. 4 (2007): 495-500.
16 . Cole, Holocaust City , 29-39.
17 . Paul S. Ell and Ian N. Gregory, eds., History and Computing 13, no. 1 (2003), theme issue on historical GIS; Anne Kelly Knowles, ed., Historical GIS: The Spatial Turn in Social Science History , theme issue, Social Science History 24, no. 3 (2000); Past Time, Past Place: GIS for History (Redlands, Calif.: ESRI Press, 2002); Emerging Trends in Historical GIS , theme issue, Historical Geography 33 (2005); and Placing History: How Maps, Spatial Data, and GIS Are Changing Historical Scholarship , digital supplement edited by Amy Hillier (Redlands, Calif.: ESRI Press, 2008).
18 . See, for example, Charles S. Aiken, The Cotton Plantation South since the Civil War (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998); Judith A. Carney, Black Rice: The African Origins of Rice Cultivation in the Americas (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2001); Blake Gumprecht, The American College Town (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2008); Anne Kelly Knowles, Calvinists Incorporated: Welsh Immigrants on Ohio s Industrial Frontier (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1997); Pierce F. Lewis, New Orleans: The Making of an Urban Landscape , 2nd ed. (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 2003); and Wilbur Zelinsky, Exploring the Beloved Country: Geographic Forays into American Society and Culture (Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 1994) and Not Yet a Placeless Land: Tracking an Emerging American Geography (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2011).
19 . Geoff Cunfer, On the Great Plains: Agriculture and Environment (College Station: Texas A M University, 2005); Brian Donahue, The Great Meadow: Farmers and the Land in Colonial Concord (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2004).
20 . W. G. Hoskins, The Making of the English Landscape (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1977); Michael P. Conzen, ed., The Making of the American Landscape , 2nd ed. (New York: Routledge, 2010).
21 . David J. Bodenhamer, John Corrigan, and Trevor M. Harris, eds., The Spatial Humanities: GIS and the Future of Humanities Scholarship (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2010), is a cogent collection of essays on the spatial turn.
22 . Examples include Donald W. Meinig s multivolume The Shaping of America (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1986-2004); R. Cole Harris, The Resettlement of British Columbia (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1997); Craig E. Colten, An Unnatural Metropolis: Wresting New Orleans from Nature (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2005); and Anne Kelly Knowles, Mastering Iron: The Struggle to Modernize an American Industry (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2013).
23 . Ian N. Gregory, A Place in History: A Guide to Using GIS in Historical Research , 2nd ed. (Oxford: Oxbow Books, 2003), available at http://www.ccsr.ac.uk/methods/publications/ig-gis.pdf ; Ian N. Gregory and Paul S. Ell, Historical GIS: Technologies, Methodologies, and Scholarship (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007).
24 . Bodenhamer, Corrigan, and Harris, Spatial Humanities . A less GIS- and geography-centric collection of essays is Michael Dear et al., eds., GeoHumanities: Art, History, Text at the Edge of Place (London: Routledge, 2011). Urban case studies include Cole, Traces of the Holocaust , and the growing collection of online examples in Todd Presner et al., HyperCities , http://www.HyperCities.com .
25 . In particular the accessibility of the International Tracing Service (ITS) archive in Bad Arolsen, Germany.
26 . For a summary of the genesis of this project, see Waitman Wade Beorn et al., Geographies of the Holocaust, Geographical Review 99, no. 4 (October 2009): 563-74.
27 . This follows the pattern of the first generation of books and articles introducing the interdisciplinary field of historical GIS, which have been as much instructional manuals on how GIS and other geospatial methods can be used in history as they have been about case studies that reach substantive conclusions or provide new interpretations of historical subjects. See, for example, Knowles, Past Time, Past Place; Gregory, A Place in History; Ian N. Gregory and Richard G. Healey, Historical GIS: Structuring, Mapping, and Analysing Geographies of the Past, Progress in Human Geography 31, no. 5 (2007): 638-53; and Gregory and Ell, Historical GIS .
28 . For a comprehensive introduction and discussion of these issues, see Paul A. Longley et al., Geographic Information Systems and Science , 3rd ed. (London: Wiley, 2010).
29 . One of the best early articulations of this idea is John Krygier, Geography, Visualization, and Landscape: Visual Methods and the Study of Landscape Dereliction (PhD diss., Pennsylvania State University, 1995). See also Krygier, Envisioning the American West, Cartography and GIS 24, no. 1 (1997): 27-50.
30 . Geoffrey P. Megargee, ed., Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933-1945 (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, 2009).
31 . Saul Friedl nder, Nazi Germany and the Jews , vol. 1, The Years of Persecution, 1933-39 and vol. 2, The Years of Extermination, 1939-45 (New York: HarperCollins, 1997, 2007).
32 . James E. Young, Towards a Received History of the Holocaust, History and Theory 36, no. 4 (1997): 21-43.
33 . Steven Spielberg s 1993 movie Schindler s List , among other cultural representations of the genocide, has crystallized important debates about the nature of representing history and the question of possible aestheticization of the experience of the genocide. For an excellent introduction to these issues, see, for example, Miriam Bratu Hansen, Schindler s List Is Not Shoah: The Second Commandment, Popular Modernism, and Public Memory, Critical Inquiry 22 (Winter 1996): 292-312. The status of visual representations of the Holocaust both in documents from the period, such as photographs, and in films, art, documentaries, and other forms in the postwar period has been a significant topic of discussion in the past two decades. For an introduction to some of the complexities of using this material, see Georges Didi-Huberman, Images in Spite of All: Four Photographs from Auschwitz (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008).
34 . Art Spiegelman, Maus: A Survivor s Tale , vol. 1, My Father Bleeds History and vol. 2, And Here My Troubles Began (New York: Pantheon Books, 1986, 1991). For an insightful analysis, see James E. Young, At Memory s Edge (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2000), 12-41.
35 . Young, Towards a Received History of the Holocaust. For an attempt at such a history, see Cole, Traces of the Holocaust .

2
Mapping the SS Concentration Camps
Anne Kelly Knowles, and Paul B. Jaskot, with Benjamin Perry Blackshear, Michael De Groot, and Alexander Yule
CONCENTRATION CAMPS ARE AMONG THE MOST familiar and haunting places of the Holocaust. Two perspectives have come to dominate our view of the camps. The most powerful and most meaningful for many people is the perspective of victims, which is expressed so movingly in published memoirs, such as Elie Wiesel s Night and Primo Levi s If This Is a Man , 1 and in thousands of survivor interviews and oral histories. These testimonies naturally refer chiefly to the parts of concentrations camps where victims were allowed or forced to go: the train ramp where they were offloaded, the barracks, the roll-call plaza, the hospital, kitchen, latrines, and the places where inmates were punished or put to death. Reinforced by the stunning photographs taken by Allied forces as they liberated camps such as Bergen-Belsen and by scores of documentaries and feature films about victims experiences, 2 the spaces where prisoners suffered have come to represent the camps in popular imagination, to the point of becoming visual tropes, along with iconic objects such as barbed wire and crowded wooden bunks. 3
Historians generally look at the camps from a more distant perspective. As they are most often interested in analyzing causal factors, they often focus on the perpetrators who created the documents so essential for much Holocaust scholarship: the Nazi leaders and SS officials who conceived of the camps, exploited prisoners labor (with the help of business owners), and implemented genocide. This is the view of policy, management, bureaucracy, and ideology. Reflecting these themes, historical studies of concentration camps tend to focus on individual camps in relation to the driving forces of the Nazis racist ideology, imperial ambitions, bureaucratic pragmatism, and the powerful economic interests that connected the SS with state and private businesses through the use of prisoners as forced labor. 4 The largest, longest-operating, and most deadly camps have received the most attention, notably Auschwitz, Dachau, Mauthausen, Sachsenhausen, Buchenwald, and Ravensbr ck, along with the extermination camps of Operation Reinhard. 5 Multivolume encyclopedia projects provide excellent summaries of this now extensive scholarship. 6 Another vein of recent scholarship, rooted in the ideas of Italian scholar Giorgio Agamben, is developing a theoretical basis for understanding the camps as thresholds to an alternate, distinctly modernist, universe where social norms were turned upside down and death dominated over life. 7
Our perspective on the camps takes a different view, one that initially is even more distant from the victim or perpetrator. Taking the SS concentration camp system as our subject, we sought to understand how the SS camps developed over space and time. We saw mapping the stages of the camp system s evolution as a means of illuminating its emerging structure, which we hoped would help us perceive its spatial logic. The synoptic view that GIS provides would also enable us to compare the characteristics of hundreds of camps at once. Because those characteristics include both the traits of victims (such as gender) and the perpetrators actions (such as putting inmates to forced labor), we further saw our approach as constituting a middle ground between the two extremes of victim and perpetrator. 8
Karin Orth and others have advocated comparative analysis of concentration camps, but few scholars have taken up the challenge. 9 The scale of the system and its chronological and geographic variability make comparison difficult. For us, such an approach was possible thanks to a historical GIS database of more than eleven hundred SS camps that was created by researchers in the Registry of Survivors at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. 10 The camps HGIS was created in order to generate maps for the first volume of the museum s Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos , 1933-1945, which covers the early camps, youth camps, SS-Baubrigaden (construction brigades), and camps under the SS-Business Administration Main Office (Wirtschafts- und Verwaltungshauptamt, or WVHA). 11 Other than Auschwitz-Birkenau and Lublin-Majdanek, the database does not include the Nazi death camps (Chelmno, Treblinka, Sobib r, and Be ec). Nor does it include the thousands of other camps that will be documented in future volumes of the USHMM Encyclopedia . 12 The volume 1 HGIS includes twenty-three main camps and their affiliated subcamps, mostly labor camps of one kind or another. Each camp in the database was located spatially by assigning it geographic coordinates 13 (see figure 2.1 ) and temporally by at least one date, in some cases several, related to the camp s period of operation. For many camps, the database held additional information culled from Encyclopedia entries, such as camp population; the kind of labor prisoners were forced to do; their gender, national origin, or ethnicity; and the names of firms that contracted with the SS to use prisoners as forced labor. Using GIS to visualize this information seemed a promising way to explore the notion of spatial logic and to compare camps characteristics. Knowles had previously used a structurally similar HGIS to study regional differences in the nineteenth-century U.S. iron industry and to examine change over time for many variables. 14 We hoped that the camps database could also provide context for more localized case studies and that it might someday contribute base layers for a larger historical GIS that relates the Holocaust to other phenomena during World War II. 15

2.1. Location of SS main camps and subcamps, developed from the camps database created for the USHMM Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos , vol. 1. The large dots represent main camps; smaller dots in the same color are the associated subcamps.
The HGIS we received from the USHMM contained a tremendous amount of information, but much of it had been entered in natural, descriptive language that had to be translated into more standardized GIS syntax. It was a simple matter to change a date such as June 4, 1943, to the GIS-readable format of 6/04/43, but other translations were more difficult. For example, what dates should we assign to camps that opened in late spring or early 1943 ? Many camp entries that had no specific closing date included a date of evacuation or liberation or both. Which should we use in a system-wide comparison of camp closings? When a camp opened and closed repeatedly, or was administered by more than one main camp or branch of the Nazi bureaucracy, should it be represented by multiple records in the database or just one? The basic issue was how we could retain the richness of the original Encyclopedia entries, which include uncertain, qualified, and sometimes contradictory information, while making as much historical and spatial information as possible accessible for GIS analysis.
The problems we encountered were partly due to subcamps being a relatively new topic of research in Holocaust Studies. Some entries in the Encyclopedia represent the first serious effort to document a given subcamp; in other cases, a few sentences represent what little evidence survives. 16 The complexity of the data reflects the chance survival or loss of historical evidence as well as the shifting nature of the camps as SS institutions, for camp organization underwent significant changes between 1933 and the end of the war. 17 Although researchers are developing models for spatial database structures that better allow for the kinds of change, ambiguity, and uncertainty that are common in historical sources, 18 the methods best suited to answer our questions required the logical, mathematical framework of conventional GIS. This meant that we had to confront the same kinds of problems that other scholars have faced in constructing GIS databases for historical research. 19
Although it was difficult to standardize the camp database (see the spotlight section What Is a Camp? ), the effort revealed the complexity and dynamism of the concentration camps as a historical phenomenon. We agree with those who argue that there was no such thing as a typical concentration camp. As Nicholas Wachsmann notes, The literature on Nazi terror is full of references to the concentration camp. But we need to be clear that the camp depicted in such works . . . is an artificial and ahistorical construct, meant to illustrate broader questions and conclusions about the human condition; it does not fully reflect the complex history of the camps. 20 This is not to say that scholarship on the SS central administration that emphasizes the coordination of policies governing the development of the camps is wrong, but to say that it represents a partial view. 21 What we were able to visualize as we grappled with the camps HGIS was the simultaneity of centralized policies and implementation that varied spatially and temporally within the universe of the camps.

Spotlight on Methods: What Is a Camp?
Developing the database that stands behind this chapter posed practical and philosophical problems that went to the heart of our efforts to understand the SS concentration camp system. As we modified the GIS database that we had inherited from the USHMM Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos so that we could map all the variables it contained, we realized that the very identity of some camps was problematic. For example, what was Auschwitz? While there is no question that it was a concentration camp, at various and overlapping times Auschwitz was also a death camp, a labor camp, a work-education camp, a penal camp, a prison, and a transit camp. The place called Auschwitz included a historical town, a prewar facility that became the basis for the first concentration camp at the site, and Birkenau and Monowitz, two other vast facilities with main-camp status. How should we model the complex ontology of Auschwitz? Could we represent its changing functions within the logical structure of GIS? Similar problems emerged as we reviewed other entries in the database. Some camps held only male prisoners during one period and then added women, or vice versa. The nationalities of inmates changed, as did their forced labor. A few camps changed location during their operation. Some opened and closed, then opened again. The administrative body responsible for some camps changed over time. And every kind of change was noted with varying degrees of temporal accuracy, from a decree issued on a particular day to by the end of 1944.
Writing history does not require that every kind of information one uses be recorded consistently, according to a set of rules. Building a database, however, forces one to confront the inconsistencies and incompleteness of the historical record or, as in our case, even the most thorough, comprehensive secondary source. In the GIScience concept of multi-instantiation, Knowles and Yule found a fitting model for geographical entities (camps) whose identities shifted across the multiple dimensions of time, space, function, administration, and inmate attributes. As a conceptual model, multi-instantiation recognizes that one name may apply to many instances of a given phenomenon, or that an entity may be amorphous or imprecise or may mean different things to different observers. On a practical level, the notion of instances helped us decide how to represent camps in the database. Generally, we decided to define each camp as a single instance, or geographical entity, with a single location, represented as a point. Subcamps that existed at two different periods with significantly different labor, prisoners, or location warranted separate entries, as did men s and women s subcamps with the same name. By this logic, Auschwitz became three points-Auschwitz I, Birkenau, and Monowitz-though we chose to represent the Auschwitz system by a single point in graphics that compare camp systems. Our overriding goals for developing rules to govern the structuring of data were to represent camps existence as accurately as possible while creating a database that would facilitate system-wide comparison of basic camp characteristics, particularly labor, gender, and the temporal dynamics of the opening and closing of camps.
This may sound cut-and-dried, but for the members of our team the process of establishing rules for database construction became an engrossing and intimate engagement with our source material and the dynamic history of the SS camps. We came to see the database not as a passive receptacle for data or a neutral tool for geovisualization and analysis, but as a work of interpretive scholarship. This struck Jaskot and Knowles most powerfully when they sat down with the Encyclopedia to proofread an early set of codes for types of inmate labor. They realized that many Encyclopedia entries described both SS intentions or declarations about the uses of inmate labor and the actual work prisoners were forced to do. Their work as scholars was to distinguish between the two by assigning the code (type of labor) that best characterized inmate activity. More generally, it became clear to all of us that every change to a camp s identity reflected decisions and actions by any number of actors at the camp, in Berlin, on the battlefield, or elsewhere. The SS camps database captures just some of those decisions and actions. Our intention to examine the SS camps system as a whole is reflected in figure 2.7 , which shows the dominant gender of prisoners in each camp, and figure 2.9 , which displays two of the primary uses of labor. Both dominant gender and primary use are our constructions, defined to discern general patterns at the continental scale.
Future research will doubtless require different categories and different database designs to answer other questions. Recent scholarship has shown that there were hundreds if not thousands of kinds of forced labor during the Nazi era, with dozens of basic activities going on at some of the larger camps, such as Monowitz. Studying the intended and actual functions of camps as defined by inmate labor will certainly need a different approach than the place-centered structure of the SS camps database. Similarly, other case-study databases in this book were designed to address particular historical issues and reveal the contents of particular sources. The database built to visualize the J ger Report on Einsatzgruppen attacks in Lithuania (see chapter 4 ) prioritizes time over place; each entry records an event, so that places that were attacked multiple times appear in multiple entries. As we continue to study the thousands of places created by the Nazis and their allies to control, terrorize, and kill other people, refining spatial categories will be a major scholarly task, one that relies on both historical and geographic knowledge. Every decision to include or exclude information, detail, and nuance must be grounded in the interests of a more complex history that aspires to tell the geography of the Holocaust.
Because database development became our primary task during this first phase of the camps project, we have not yet been able to pursue all of our initial research questions. Exploratory mapping also raised new questions that have yielded some unexpected findings. The remainder of this chapter presents the most compelling data visualizations and analyses to emerge from our research thus far. We begin with the broad spatial story of the expansion of concentration camps across Germany and beyond, first focusing on specific periods identified in Holocaust scholarship and then on the relationship between the opening of new main camps and the Reich s shifting political relationships. We also relate the temporal patterns of camp openings to major phases in Nazi policy. In the next section, we compare spatial and social characteristics, including the spatial extent and locational patterns of main camp-subcamp systems, the spatial patterns of gender in prisoner populations, and the uses of forced labor. Each of these comparisons reveals another geography that raises historical questions.
Development of the Concentration Camps over Space and Time
Holocaust historians have agreed for some time about the basic chronological stages of the concentration camps development. Each stage reflected shifting Nazi policy regarding the purpose of camps, their operations, populations, camp conditions, and inmate mortality. 22 The four maps in figure 2.2 summarize key stages in the spatio-temporal development of the SS camp system. The first camps, established in 1933, were improvised, usually short-lived places where political opponents of the Nazi government were incarcerated. The approximately 106 protective-custody camps, now generally known as the early camps, were all on German soil. Many were located near industrial areas, reflecting the regime s initial targeting of Communist and labor activists and the availability of industrial buildings for Nazi appropriation. 23
Heinrich Himmler, appointed to oversee the protective-custody camps in 1934, conceived of a unified system of much larger, more permanent concentration camps that would operate under a centralized command, with Dachau as the model for camp discipline and organization. This plan was realized after 1936 as the SS, under Himmler s command, built Sachsenhausen, Buchenwald, Flossenb rg, Hinzert, and Ravensbr ck in Germany, as well as Mauthausen in annexed Austria. 24 Prisoners sent to these camps included many groups defined as racially or biologically unfit, asocials, political agitators, and other categories of inmates, against whom the SS used new levels of violence and terror. At the same time, camp inmates were meant to contribute labor to SS-owned enterprises. Beginning in 1937, prisoners were forced to labor in camp quarries and brickyards that supported the initial SS ambition to become part of Hitler s grand architectural vision for the postwar Reich and then the needs of wartime construction. 25 By the summer of 1939, the war itself legitimated this dual function, as the SS founded more camps across the Reich s expanding sphere of influence, such as Stutthof on the Baltic coast and Natzweiler in the reincorporated Alsace.
The SS intensified its use of terror and mass killing from late 1939 to early 1942 to crush resistance and eliminate unwanted populations, which now included Soviet prisoners of war, Poles who resisted the German occupation, and Jews. This goal diabolically and dynamically also served to expand the growing forced-labor operations and, hence, the influence of the SS, particularly in the building-materials industries. The final stage of camps development from early 1942 to the end of the war saw the explosion of main-camp and labor-camp populations, particularly in the latter half of 1944, when Jews who had been confined to Europe s largest ghettos were deported into the camp system. The seeming contradictions of Nazi ideology, which demanded the destruction of specific peoples while pursuing imperial ambition and an economic policy that supposedly valued efficiency, reached their peak in this period, as Jews in particular were either sent to their deaths at extermination camps or shunted into the forced-labor system of the subcamps, where many prisoners died from starvation, exposure, brute labor, or disease. 26 The system collapsed in early 1945, with camps emptied in forced evacuations as the Germans fled from advancing Soviet forces and Allied forces pushing east into Germany.

2.2. Four key stages in the spatio-temporal development of the SS camps system. In the first frame, so-called early camps are represented by the same symbol as subcamps for simplicity. Time spans were chosen to pick out major changes in the spatial distribution and extent of the evolving SS camps system.
Do the geographical patterns framed by these broad chronological stages reveal that some kind of underlying spatial logic drove the location of SS camps? We do not know enough yet to answer definitively. Generally, mapping the camps data illustrates in geographic terms what the historical literature describes. For example, mapping reveals a significant shift in the spatial strategy of the SS during the pivotal year of 1942. Main camps established from June 1936 to January 1942 were located partly for economic or political reasons, to exploit resource deposits for profitable SS industries or to provide building materials for Albert Speer s monumental construction projects in Berlin and other German cities. 27 These camps were also well positioned to assist in the elimination of unwanted populations within the territory of the growing Reich. The main camps that were established from the spring of 1942 through 1943, however, were chiefly intended either to hold or deport Jews to killing centers or labor elsewhere in the system (Herzogenbusch in the Netherlands and Bergen-Belsen, near Hamburg) or to kill Jews or put them to labor locally. The camps at Krakau-Plaszow, Vaivara, Kauen, Riga-Kaiserwald, and Warschau were ghettos or existing labor camps that SS-WVHA chief Oswald Pohl converted into concentration camps. 28 To borrow an idea from the Budapest study in this volume, the later camps in the East could be interpreted as a massive effort to take the concentration camps to the Jews (see chapter 5 ). At the same time, the rapid growth of subcamps in 1942-44 illustrates the incorporation of SS operations into the Reich s overall military-economic plan for Total War, as does the involvement of other main camps in the armaments effort.
Mapping confirms the broad outlines of the established chronology of the camps. Our maps also support findings in national studies that the reception of, or perceived need for, concentration camps varied greatly across occupied and Allied territories. 29 We particularly wondered how quickly concentration camps were established on territory conquered by the Reich. Michael De Groot researched this question while reconstructing the territorial boundary changes and changing identities of European nation-states during World War II. 30 Comparing main-camp locations to evolving territorial borders shows that the SS established most of its concentration camps within the Reich (see figure 2.3) .


2.3. Territorial boundary changes in relation to main-camp openings. These three maps show key moments in the expansion of Nazi territorial control. Both geopolitical and military control appears to have been necessary for founding an SS main camp on foreign soil, yet the many areas under Nazi control that lacked major camps suggest that other factors were also involved in locational decisions. Territorial control was a necessary but not a sufficient condition for the establishment of SS camps; mapping makes it clear that annexed territory was strongly preferred to occupied territory. The first camp outside the borders of the expanding Reich was not built until March 1942, about two and a half years after the beginning of the war. The SS built no camps in Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Italy, Croatia, or Bulgaria. This is not to say that places of detention did not exist in those countries-Croatia, for example, developed its own concentration camp system 31 -but for varying reasons the reach of the Reich, through the hand of the SS, did not extend to territories that remained at least nominally independent. The Germans occupied Italy, Slovakia, and Hungary toward the end of the war, but by the time the Nazis gained direct control of their governments, it was no longer feasible to build comprehensive camp systems on their soil. Thus, the overall structure of the SS camps system was firmly anchored in the Reich.
Exceptions to the known patterns of camp development require further investigation. Earlier in the war, no clear pattern emerged in terms of how quickly camps were established in newly annexed territory. In some cases, a main camp was established on previously foreign territory within just a few months of conquest or the signing of a treaty. Mauthausen, for example, was in operation by at least June 1938, only three months after the Anschluss. In contrast, Auschwitz I was established in May 1940, about seven months after the occupation of Poland, and the main camps at Kauen (Kaunas) and Vaivara did not open until two years after the establishment of the Reichskommissariat Ostland. No SS concentration camps were established in Vichy France (Natzweiler and some of its subcamps were in the German-incorporated parts of Alsace). Whereas 94 percent of the land area that Germany annexed lay in Central and Eastern Europe, only 24 percent of SS camps (including eight of twenty-one main camps) were located in eastern territory beyond the boundaries of prewar Germany. 32 The extermination camps were the dreadful exceptions to this rule. Lublin-Majdanek, Chelmno, Treblinka, Sobib r, and Be ec were all built in former Polish territory, either in the Warthegau or in the General Government. Although scholars have provided good explanations for the location and timing of some of these camps, the variability of the system as a whole becomes clearer by mapping the data.
Although the SS established relatively few camps in Eastern Europe, it created fewer still in occupied Western Europe. This difference reflects Nazi war aims and racial attitudes. Hitler s territorial and racial agenda in Western Europe was considerably less ambitious than his plan for Eastern Europe; the search for Lebensraum and attendant ambitions for Germanification applied mainly to the East. 33 The first main camp built west of the changing German border, Herzogenbusch, did not open until January 1943, almost three years after the German invasion of the Netherlands, and it was primarily intended to be a transit camp for collecting Jews to be sent East for labor or extermination. 34 Anti-Jewish legislation was also passed relatively late in occupied western territory. In Belgium such legislation was issued discreetly and disguised as minor changes to avoid alienating the Belgian population, and only in May 1942 were Belgian Jews forced to wear the yellow Star of David on their clothing in public. 35 In contrast, anti-Jewish legislation was introduced swiftly in occupied Eastern Europe. In the General Government, for example, racial laws were quickly introduced, causing many Jews to flee and seek refuge in Soviet-occupied eastern Poland. 36
Militarily, central Germany seemed far from Allied bombers and, even in 1943, from the reach of Soviet forces. Construction of camp systems such as Mittelbau (Dora), which consumed thousands of laborers in building underground armaments factories, could thus take brutal advantage of the Jewish and Slavic forced-labor population in the all-out drive to sustain the German war effort. As historians have pointed out, geography, race, and ethnicity mattered when it came to how one was treated under Speer s policies as minister of armaments. 37 Comparing these regional variations across Europe emphasizes the irrational racist foundations of Nazi economic and military policy. In essence, our maps affirm Adam Tooze s argument that the economic and genocidal functions of the camps were intimately related to Hitler s and Himmler s mutually supporting goals for Germanification. 38 Each variation from the overall pattern of development forces students of the period to question why a particular location was emphasized at a particular time.
Figure 2.4 displays the temporal sequence of camp openings. The diagram clearly shows the different rhythms of each major period: the swift creation of the early camps, the long pause while Himmler consolidated power, the pegging out of the new concentration camp empire and the beginning of subcamps, and then the rapid establishment of subcamps, particularly in 1944. In this diagram, main camps are listed alphabetically for ease of finding them. Geographically, expansion moved in more than one direction. From late 1939 to early 1942, the SS opened main camps in the East (Stutthof first, then Auschwitz [incorporating Auschwitz I, Auschwitz II-Birkenau, and Auschwitz III-Monowitz], and Gross-Rosen) and in Germany and occupied France (Neuengamme and Natzweiler, respectively). More new main camps opened in the last eighteen months of the war (ten total) than in any comparable period of time, and again they spanned the geographical reach of the Reich. Unlike the earlier period, when main camps preceded subcamps by months or years, main camps established in 1943 or 1944 often opened after smaller labor camps had been in operation in their region.

2.4. Concentration camp openings in relation to major periods in the development of the SS camps system. Main camps are shown in black, subcamps in red.
Spatial and Social Characteristics of the Camps
There are many GIS techniques for visualizing the spatial characteristics of data. One that seemed especially appropriate for comparing the geographical relationship between main camps and their associated subcamps is called sight-line analysis. This technique draws straight lines from a set of points to a target feature, simulating the lines of sight across a flat surface. Given the continental scale of our data, we used an equidistant map projection 39 so that the lines would give us the straight-line distance from each point to its target. Figure 2.5 shows the results of running sight-line analysis on sixteen major SS camp systems. Note that the starburst pattern radiating from each main camp does not represent roads or any other form of physical connection between that camp and its satellites. (If we knew the transportation routes that actually connected each camp-subcamp pair, the distances would of course be greater than those in table 2.1 .) The point of this visualization is to enable a general comparison in the geographic concentration of camp systems and to discern patterns of distance and proximity that beg further study.

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