The Holocaust is a subject that, in itself, is too vast, and so if you need to write a research paper on the same, perhaps it would be better to branch out the subject and choose a specialized topic. EduZenith gives you a list of topic ideas for a Holocaust research paper.
It all happened so fast. The ghetto. The deportation. The sealed cattle car. The fiery altar upon which the history of our people and the future of mankind were meant to be sacrificed…
― Elie Wiesel
Choosing an appropriate research topic can be quite a daunting task. It needs to appeal to you, and your teachers, plus, it needs to be such that it can be sourced easily from the accessible data. To add to that, if what you need to write about is an aspect of the Holocaust, there’s good reason for you to feel overwhelmed.
The Holocaust, as we know, is one of the most tragic and disturbing events in the history of the world, one which never should have happened. Countless people, including over 5 million Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals, Poles, etc., were tortured and murdered for no reason. Nazi Germany was a violent and racist country to be in at the time, and the Holocaust is an unfortunate example of ideologies of race and supposed purity taking over logic and rational thinking. So many questions remain unanswered: Could such a horrific event have been prevented? Did the world do too less? Can such an event happen again in the future?
The ideas given below (classified in different categories) can help you to explore prospective research topics which you can use for your paper on the Holocaust.
Interesting Research Topic Ideas
1. Important People in Nazi Germany
This category includes some of the important people in Nazi Germany who played significant roles in the cruel regime, as well as those who chose to revolt against it. You can choose one or more of these people, and write about their lives, their entry into the Nazi party (if applicable), their ideologies, the things they were (in)famous for, and anything else that you feel should be included.
● Adolf Hitler
● Heinrich Himmler
● Dr. Josef Mengele: The Angel of Death
● Roland Freisler
● Adolf Eichmann
● Sophie Scholl
● Oskar Schindler
● Aribert Heim: Dr. Death
● Heinrich Müller
● Simon Wiesenthal
2. Institutionalized Genocide
The massacre of millions of people in Nazi Germany is a classic example of institutionalized genocide, as different governmental organizations were responsible for the identification, arrests, torture and eventually, the murder of countless Jewish and non-Jewish victims. Any one (or more than one) governmental organization can make for a good research topic.
● Sturmabteilung (SA)
● Geheime Staatspolizei (Gestapo)
● Schutzstaffel (SS)
● The Different Departments of the Nazi Party
3. Concentration Camps
The infamous concentration camps were responsible for the death of over 10 million Jewish and non-Jewish people, with many estimates suggesting that thousands of victims have been unaccounted for. You can pick a specific concentration camp as your topic of research, or an aspect of the concentration camps in general. Include accounts of survivors, statistics of victims, daily routines, methods of punishment, etc. Aside from the major ones listed here, you can also pick a smaller, lesser-known death camp for your research.
● Camp Hospitals
● The fate of children at concentration camps
● Camp facilities
4. Methods of Mass Murder
This perhaps might be a more intense, more disturbing category of topics for you to choose your subject of research from. The methods of killing used in the Nazi regime were torturous, and it really is a wonder how one man gained the support of countless people in the atrocities that he committed.
● Gas chambers
● The Death Wall
● Mobile Killing Units
● Death Marches
● Euthanasia Program – Murder of the Disabled
● Medical Experiments
● Mass Shootings
● Gassing Trucks
5. Notable Events During the Holocaust
There were several significant and noteworthy events that took place during and after the period of the Holocaust. These events ranged from revolts, planned assassinations, and unsuccessful attempts to overthrow Hitler by some members of the Nazi party themselves.
● Nuremberg Trials
● The Auschwitz Sonderkommando Revolt of 1944
● Night of the Long Knives
● The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising of 1943
● Operation Valkyrie
● The Final Solution
● Voyage of the MS St. Louis
● The Liberation
● Post-War Trials
● Babi Yar Massacre
The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising of 1943
6. Victims of the Holocaust
Again, this is a more disturbing category of topics for you to choose from, but will definitely account for a very compelling research paper. Try getting access to primary data if possible (interviewing or interacting with a Holocaust survivor or even someone whose relative was a Holocaust survivor) for firsthand information.
● The Gypsies
● The elderly
● German resistors
● Jehovah’s Witnesses
● People of African descent
7. Other Topics
Aside from all the aforementioned topics, there certainly are more which you can pick for your research paper. Whether you’re a middle school student or a student in college, these topics will certainly help you write a good, extensive research paper.
● The Aftermath of the Holocaust
● Pink Triangles of the Homosexuals
● The Star of David
● Sterilization of Jewish Workers
● War Criminals
● The Liberators
● Anne Frank
● Elie Wiesel
● The Reaction of the Rest of the World
● The Jewish Religion
● The First Concentration Camps
● Expenses incurred during and after the Holocaust
● Resistance by University Students
● The Creation of Israel
● The Role of Zyklon B
● Dolchstosslegende: The stab-in-the-back myth
● The Swastika
● International Refugee Policies
● The Most Wanted Nazis
● Being Jewish in Pre-War Germany
● Holocaust Denial
The Holocaust was an extremely traumatic time for those who were directly or indirectly affected by it. There are several books and films that portray the horrifying time in history, which you may use in order to understand it better. If you can, you should read The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, Night by Elie Wiesel, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne, to name a few. These books will really give you an insight into the world that was Nazi Germany. If you feel movies might make a better impact on you, watch Schindler’s List, Life is Beautiful, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (the film), and The Pianist among others.
We hope we could help with our topic suggestions. Good luck!