The Massacre in Jedwabne, a detailed study of the mass murder of Jewish townspeople in Poland in 1941, is published by Columbia University Press and East European Monographs.
On July 10, 1941, the Jewish inhabitants in the small Polish town of Jedwabne were massacred by German policemen and some Polish townsmen and peasants. Chodakiewicz provides us with a criminal investigation of this mass murder. In this detailed study of a small area in Poland, Chodakiewicz examines the conditions that led to the heinous slaughter of Jedwabne’s Jewish population.
A dominant interpretation of this event depicts the Germans as the perpetrators of the crime while the Poles looked on. An alternative version suggests that the Germans plotted the crime, while the Poles executed the slaughter. The author argues that these two competing theses are not supported by the available evidence. Despite the limitation of sources, Chodakiewicz emphasizes a comprehensive methodology using all available documents, testimonies, oral recollections, and forensic and other physical evidence to reconstruct the history.
In addition, Chodakiewicz provides an alternative interpretation to the dominant paradigms concerning Jewish-Polish relations in general and the mass murder in Jedwabne in particular.Professor Chodakiewicz is a Professor of History at The Institute of World Politics.