Gender and Selection During the Holocaust: Transports of Western European Jews to the East

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Abstract

This paper examines the impact of gender on decisions that military, police, and bureaucrats made in selection of western European Jews for deportation venues, on initial treatment at Auschwitz and death camps, and on survival. Examining data collected and made public by Yad Vashem on 1100 transports carrying more than 550,000 Western European Jews to the east, I find that women comprised a majority on most transports and a disproportionate number of those sent to immediate death at Auschwitz. Patterns of gender composition of transports varied over the course of the war and from country to country in significant and mostly predictable ways. Overall survival rates for men were higher than for women based on transports carrying about 210,000 of the 550,000 people.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)459-478
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Genocide Research
Volume22
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law
  • History
  • Political Science and International Relations

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