RELIGIOUS MINORITIES AND RESISTANCE TO GENOCIDE: CHRISTIAN PROTECTION OF JEWS IN THE LOW COUNTRIES DURING THE HOLOCAUST
Why do some religious groups protect victims of Genocide while others do not? This dissertation argues that local religious minorities are more likely to save persecuted groups from purification campaigns. Two reinforcing mechanisms link minority status to rescue operations. First, religious minorities are better able to set up clandestine organizations because their members are more committed and inward looking. Second, religious minorities empathize with targets of purification campaigns, imbuing their networks with preferences that lead them to resist Genocide. A geo-referenced dataset of Jewish evasion in the Netherlands and Belgium during the Holocaust is deployed to assess the minority hypothesis. Spatial statistics and archival work reveal that Protestants were more likely to rescue Jews in Catholic regions of the Low Countries while Catholics facilitated evasion in Protestant areas. Post-war testimonies and secondary literature demonstrate the importance of minority groups for rescue in other countries during the Holocaust as well as other episodes of mass violence, underlining that it is the local position of church communities -and not something inherent to any religion itselfthat produces networks of assistance to threatened neighbors.
Collective Action; Genocide; Social Solidarity; Political science; Sociology
Tarrow, Sidney G.
Kuo, Alex; Way, Christopher Robert
Ph. D., Government
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis