1st Edition

Holocaust and Genocide Denial A Contextual Perspective

Edited By Paul Behrens, Olaf Jensen, Nicholas Terry Copyright 2017
    276 Pages
    by Routledge

    276 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book provides a detailed analysis of one of the most prominent and widespread international phenomena to which criminal justice systems has been applied: the expression of revisionist views relating to mass atrocities and the outright denial of their existence. Denial poses challenges to more than one academic discipline: to historians, the gradual disappearance of the generation of eyewitnesses raises the question of how to keep alive the memory of the events, and the fact that negationism is often offered in the guise of historical 'revisionist scholarship' also means that there is need for the identification of parameters which can be applied to the office of the 'genuine' historian. Legal academics and practitioners as well as political scientists are faced with the difficulty of evaluating methods to deal with denial and must in this regard identify the limits of freedom of speech, but also the need to preserve the rights of victims. Beyond that, the question arises whether the law can ever be an effective option for dealing with revisionist statements and the revisionist movement. In this regard, Holocaust and Genocide Denial: A Contextual Perspective breaks new ground: exploring the background of revisionism, the specific methods devised by individual States to counter this phenomenon, and the rationale for their strategies. Bringing together authors whose expertise relates to the history of the Holocaust, genocide studies, international criminal law and social anthropology, the book offers insights into the history of revisionism and its varying contexts, but also provides a thought-provoking engagement with the challenging questions attached to its treatment in law and politics.

    List of contributors


    Paul Behrens, Nicholas Terry and Olaf Jensen

    Part I

    Development and concept of genocide denial

    1. Alexander Ratcliffe: British Holocaust denial in embryo

    Mark Hobbs

     2. Countering Holocaust denial in relation to the Nuremberg trials

    Michael Salter

    3.  Holocaust denial in the age of web 2.0: negationist discourse since the Irving-Lipstadt trial

    Nicholas Terry

    Part II

    Holocaust and genocide denial around the world

    4. Silence and denial in Gulag testimonies: listening for the unspeakable

    Elisabeth Anstett

    5. The presence of the past: on the significance of the Holocaust and the criminalisation of its negation in the Federal Republic of Germany

    Christian Mentel

    6. The prohibition of ‘glorification of National Socialism’ as an addition to the criminal provision on genocide denial: (Sect. 130 (4) of the German Criminal Code)

    Björn Elberling and Alexander Hoffmann

    7. Reckoning with the past? Rwanda's revised Genocide Ideology Law and international human rights law on freedom of expression

    Sejal Parmar

    8.  A view of the impact of genocide denial laws in Rwanda

    Niamh Barry

    9. Confronting genocide denial: using the law as a tool in combating genocide denial in Rwanda

    Freda Kabatsi

    10. Srebrenica and genocide denial in the former Yugoslavia: what has the ICTY done to address it?

    Dejana Radisavljević and Martin Petrov

    11. Holocaust denial in Iran: Ahamdinejad, the 2006 Holocaust conference and international law

    Paul Behrens

    12. A centenary of denial: the case of the Armenian genocide

    Nariné Ghazaryan

    Part III

    Dealing with Holocaust and genocide denial

    13. From introduction to implementation: first steps of the EU Framework Decision 2008/913/JHA against racism and xenophobia

    Paolo Lobba

    14. Combating genocide denial via law: état des lieux of anti-denial legislation

    Caroline Fournet and Clotilde Pégorier

    15. Why not the law? Options for dealing with genocide and Holocaust denial

    Paul Behrens

    16. Concluding thoughts

    Paul Behrens, Nicholas Terry and Olaf Jensen



    Dr Paul Behrens is a Reader (Associate Professor) in Law at the University of Edinburgh.

    Dr Nicholas Terry is a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in the Department of History at the University of Exeter.

    Dr Olaf Jensen is an Honorary Associate Member of the Stanley Burton Centre of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Leicester.