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Judith Vöcker

Junior Fellow (10/2020 - 8/2021)


“In the Name of the German Nation.”
The German Jurisdiction in Warsaw and Cracow during the Nazi Occupation


Web VoeckerThis PhD project focusses on the German jurisdiction in the General Government and how it treated and punished crimes committed by Jews, Poles, and ethnic Germans. It addresses what the occupiers defined as a criminal offense and according to which legal basis these crimes were prosecuted. This project focusses on the German Court and the Special Court and their verdicts, since they sentenced not only Jewish but also Polish and ethnic German defendants.


It examines the development of court verdicts over the years of Nazi occupation in Warsaw and Cracow. Thereby, it can show whether and why changes within these juridical entities occurred – or whether they were connected to the occupation policies regarding the respective territories or the successful/unsuccessful course of the war from the German perspective. To this end, I will discuss the occupation politics of the General Government to reveal which political and strategic purpose it was designed to serve. This is supported by a comparison of similar criminal offences committed by Jews, Poles, and ethnic Germans throughout the Nazi occupation. The focus lies on reconstructing the way in which German juridical entities treated criminal cases and offenders from all spheres of society and on exploring the extent to which their verdicts were influenced by their occupational aims, racial ideologies, and the course of the war.


Judith Vöcker is a doctoral candidate at the Stanley Burton Centre for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Leicester. She has held fellowships at the Midlands4Cities Doctoral Training Programme of the AHRC and the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure and has been the recipient of several grants and awards, including from the German History Society, the Institute of Contemporary History in Munich, and the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich. Prior to starting her PhD, she studied Slavic Studies and German Literature and Linguistics in Cologne, Moscow, and Cracow and Eastern European History in Frankfurt/Oder and London.


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The Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies (VWI) is funded by:


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