Auschwitz: On the Bottom

The Holocaust Podcast | Episode 2:
European Antisemitism – Part 1

The Holocaust was the greatest crime ever perpetrated in the history of human civilisation. In The Holocaust Podcast, created by Standpoint Zero, we want to take a fresh look at the history of the genocide of millions of people at the hands of the Hitlerist Nazi regime to see what lessons we can learn for the times in which we live.

Episode 3: In this episode of The Holocaust Podcast we journey with Primo Levi to a place he describes as ‘the bottom,’ a place where a human being can fall no further — into the depths of the Auschwitz labour camp of Monowitz. Levi explores what it means to be robbed of one’s humanity, to be humiliated, to be emptied.

Not only is this about history — about something that happened in the past, the Holocaust is a warning for our future. With right-wing racism on the rise, with racist and intolerant parties and personalities again entering the mainstream of European and American politics, the Holocaust stands as a terrible reminder of what happens when we use hatred and intolerance as instruments to achieve our own patriotic and nationalistic political ends. The Holocaust remains the most important lesson of the twentieth century — and Trump, Brexit, and the war in Ukraine only serve to remind us that this is a lesson we need. The Holocaust Podcast aims to inform us of the past and warn us for the future.

Jason Michael McCann, M.Phil. (TCD) Conflict Studies
The author holds a postgraduate degree in Race, Ethnicity and Conflict from the University of Dublin, Trinity College, and an academic fellowship in the study of conflict from the University of West Flanders. He has published on the history of the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp and the murder of the Hungarian Jews in 1944.