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Perceptions of Reality: Methodologies That Make Them Come to Life

How can we narrate an event as ponderous as the Holocaust? Scholars have narrated this historical tragedy using two perspectives: that of the victim and that of the perpetrator. The perspective of the victim gives us the “what” – What happened in the camps? What were the thoughts and reactions of victims? What lead victims to make the choices they made? Meanwhile, the perspective of the perpetrator tells us “why?” – Why were certain people treated a certain way? Why did people allow the violence to happen? Separately, these perspectives are the main pieces of the puzzle; together, they form a more complete picture.

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On the Bright Side: The Good War

In this segment of On the Bright Side, we look at why the Second World War is sometimes referred to as “The Good War” by Americans. This distinction needs repeating: it is in American History that WWII is referred to as “The Good War.” As we move farther away from that era, this nickname becomes scrutinized more severely. Time can also cause us to become detached from the events that occurred, making it easier to accept an optimistic view.

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