Biography Of Daniel Goldhagen 's ' First They Killed My Father ' Essay

Biography Of Daniel Goldhagen 's ' First They Killed My Father ' Essay

Length: 1133 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Daniel Goldhagen (2009) states that in less than four years, Cambodia’s political leaders induced their followers to turn Cambodia’s backwards and regressing society into a massive concentration camp in which they steadily killed victims. Furthermore, a deeper understanding of the Cambodian genocide is provided within Luong Ung’s personal narrative, “First They Killed My Father” (2000). Ung’s memoir is a riveting account of the Cambodian genocide, which provides readers with a personalized account of her family’s experience during the genocide. She informs readers of the causes of the Cambodian genocide and she specifies the various eliminationist techniques used to produce the ideological Khmer vision. Nonetheless, she falls short because she is unable to provide the underlying details responsible for the genocide, particularly the role of perpetrators.
Unlike Goldhagen who attempts to create a framework to explain the causes of genocide and a broad category of various eliminationist techniques, Ung’s (2000) narrative is “a story of survival” (xi) dictating her families’ personal experience during the genocide. Ung (2000) mentions that victims, including herself and her family, experienced depersonalization; whereby, all members in her camp system were forced to dress and style their hair the same way to rid themselves “of the corrupt Western culture of vanity” (Ung 2000:58). The compliance to the orders guarantees their safety for the time being (Ung 2000). Furthermore, all victims were forced to adopt a suspicious attitude. In fact, Ung (2000) mentions that “hunger and fear make people turn against one another” (54). This exemplifies a culture where “[f]riendship does not matter” and all victims must take their own precaution...

... middle of paper ...

...d out against anyone perceived as a threat to the state’s vision (Ung 2000). The exterminationist techniques outlined within Ung’s memoir resembles the tactics outlined by Goldhagen; however, Ung provides a deeper understanding of the tactics through her experiences during the genocide.
In conclusion, Ung’s memoir provides readers with a deeper understanding of the Cambodian genocide because she recounts her individual experience; thus, allowing readers to understand the genocide at a personal level rather than through Goldhagen’s broad theory of eliminationism. Her experience within the camps gives meaning to Goldhagen’s theory because it provides the theoretical framework with examples. Nonetheless, the role of perpetrators in setting the genocide into motion remains unclear within her novel; despite the fact that they are responsible for initiating the genocide.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Hitler's Willing Executioners by Daniel Goldhagen Essay

- "Goldhagen’s book is worthless as scholarship.” (Finkelstein and Birn, 1998) In the light of the public success of Daniel Goldhagen's book, Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust. Evaluate whether this statement is justified. After its publication in 1996, Daniel Goldhagen’s PHD Thesis and book Hitler’s Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust (Goldhagen, 1996) evoked great public fascination and popular interest, almost more than any other historical research on the Holocaust that came before it....   [tags: book review, germans, the holocaust]

Better Essays
3218 words (9.2 pages)

The Father of Microbes: Biography of Louis Pasteur Essay

- Louis Pasteur was born in the town of Dole, France in a family of tanners. He was born in December 27, 1822, in a time when the germs and microbes hadn’t been discovered. The profession of tanner is a person who gets leather to become soft and strong. This profession came from his great grandfather who owned a tanning business since 1763 (Notable Biographies, 2008). As children, the Jean-Joseph and Jeanne Roqui Pasteur, taught them to be loyal, respect, financial security, and hard work. By the year of 1831, Pasteur went to Ecole Primaire and to College d’ Arboix (Pasteur Brewing, 2008) where it is believed that he witnesses treatment of rabies on victims which killed 16 on that day....   [tags: Biography ]

Better Essays
885 words (2.5 pages)

The Life and Times of Daniel Massey Essay

- It was beautiful. The waterfall cascaded down the mountain in a way that left people breathless. The flowers bespeckled the land with an ethereal majesty. The river, so blue, so enticing, even the gods could not resist the temptation of a swim. Yet, it wasn’t good enough. It could never be good enough. At least, not to Daniel Massey, the artist that painted this landscape. “I’m my biggest critic,” said Daniel. “I always find things I could have done better.” This same statement has been muttered for thousands of years by successful artists, writers, and inventors of great skill....   [tags: Artist, Art Analysis, Daniel Massey]

Better Essays
1354 words (3.9 pages)

A Critical Analysis Of The Browning / Goldhagen Essay

- A critical analysis of the Browning/Goldhagen debate in relation to foreign perpetrators in Eastern Europe In examining the historiography of the Holocaust, one central concern is discovering the motives of the perpetrators. The question of motivation is arguably the most disputed topic within Holocaust research and remains controversial within the debates of Intentionalism vs Structuralism. Central to this debate are the two books, Daniel Jonah Goldhagen’s Hitler’s Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust and Christopher R....   [tags: Nazi Germany, The Holocaust, Antisemitism]

Better Essays
1040 words (3 pages)

Robinson Crusoe By Daniel Defoe Essay

- “Bad things do happen in the world, like war, natural disasters, disease. But out of those situations always arise stories of ordinary people doing extraordinary things.” Robinson Crusoe changes vastly, from a stubborn man to a prideful but knowledgeable one. While he accomplishes his journey of self-discovery, these are achieved by the several apparent forces. In the novel Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe, the forces fear, natural disasters, and religion change Robinson Crusoe significantly. A principal force that changes Robinson Crusoe in the novel is fear....   [tags: Robinson Crusoe, Novel, Daniel Defoe, Man Friday]

Better Essays
789 words (2.3 pages)

We Must Keep Daniel Defoe in the Literary Cannon Essay

- Daniel Defoe born in or around 1660 experienced the most complex disastrous events in England before he was seven. In 1664 a Dutch fleet attacked London, in 1665 the plague took seventy thousand lives and in 1666 the great fire destroyed Defoe’s neighborhood expect for three houses, one being his. Born to a family of dissenters a class of people who refused to conform to the Church of England, Defoe was hindered with obstacles from the start. Receiving his education from a dissenter’s school and as West indicates: “barred from Oxford and Cambridge and instead received three years of higher education under the Reverend Charles Morton, a future vice–president of Harvard University who drilled...   [tags: Work of Daniel Defoe]

Better Essays
1248 words (3.6 pages)

Daniel Defoe 's Robinson Crusoe Essay

- Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe explores the concept of overcoming adversity to eventually gain a higher role of power. Robinson Crusoe was to lead a mundane life pursuing a career in law, had he followed his parents’ wishes and not been adamant about living a life at sea. However, going against his parents’ wants, he fashioned a life for his own at sea. Crusoe spends the majority of the novel building a life for himself that he would have not been able to have had he stayed in York. He became a plantation owner in Brasil, which is what lead to the shipwreck that caused him to become a castaway....   [tags: Robinson Crusoe, Novel, Daniel Defoe, Man Friday]

Better Essays
1143 words (3.3 pages)

Arguments of Christopher Browning versus Daniel John Goldhagen Regarding The German View of the Holocaust

- Arguments of Christopher Browning versus Daniel John Goldhagen Regarding The German View of the Holocaust The arguments of Christopher Browning and Daniel John Goldhagen contrast greatly based on the underlining meaning of the Holocaust to ordinary Germans. Why did ordinary citizens participate in the process of mass murder. Christopher Browning examines the history of a battalion of the Order Police who participated in mass shootings and deportations. He debunks the idea that these ordinary men were simply coerced to kill but stops short of Goldhagen's simplistic thesis....   [tags: Papers Holocaust German Killing Essays]

Better Essays
2634 words (7.5 pages)

Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe Essay

- Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe The balance between agency and the challenges to it proposed by unexplained or supernatural occurrences is of central importance in Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe. Additionally, the question of human control over various surroundings seemingly develops commensurate to the title character’s increased reliance on and understanding of his faith. That particular conflict is a replication of the overall theme of the narrative — Crusoe’s finding increasing discomfort the more familiar he becomes with his environment....   [tags: Daniel Defoe Robinson Crusoe Essays]

Better Essays
1199 words (3.4 pages)

The Life of Daniel Defoe Essay

- The Life of Daniel Defoe Daniel Defoe was easily one of the most influential and accomplished English author/writer of all time. Not only is Daniel Defoe considered as the founder of the English novel along with Samuel Richardson, but he was also a critical figure in European journalism and political commentary. Defoe has produced as much as 200 works of non fiction and 2,000 short essays in various periodical publications. In addition to over half a dozen full length novels such as Robinson Crusoe, a tale of a shipwrecked sailor stranded on a remote island....   [tags: English Literature Authors Daniel Defoe Essays]

Better Essays
1473 words (4.2 pages)