Truth and Reconciliation

  • Germany Faced its Horrible Past. Can the US Do the Same?

    by Michele Norris

    "A full accounting of slavery is one of terror and trauma, and for decades the natural inclination was to ask, why would anyone want to claim that history?... What happens if we don’t?" Michele Norris's essay features University of Texas historian Daina Ramey Berry.

  • The German Model for America

    West German society intially sought to repress evidence of the Holocaust and Nazi crimes, preserving a myth that German civilians were also victims. The work of owning up to those crimes took decades and encountered bitter resistance. 

  • How an American TV Mini-Series Helped the Germans Acknowledge the Holocaust

    by Robert Brent Toplin

    An American television minseries overcame initial skepticism by German authorities to rouse public conscience about the Holocaust and the complicity of ordinary Germans with persecution and genocide. Americans hesitant toward "political" popular culture should consider its contributions to truth and reconciliation.

  • The Reconciliation Must Be Televised

    by Wesley Morris

    The United States has flirted with truth and reconciliation. But it abandoned Reconstruction and failed to act on the warnings of the 1968 Kerner Commission. Most of all, these failures reflect the vain hope that overcoming the country's racist past can be done quickly.