Peter Hayes has been teaching Holocaust studies for decades and Why? grows out of the questions he's encountered from his students.
Despite the outpouring of books, films, memorials, museums and courses devoted to the subject, a coherent explanation of why such carnage erupted still eludes people.
Numerous myths have sprouted, many to console us that things could have gone differently if only some person or entity had acted more bravely or wisely; others cast new blame on favourite or surprising villains or even on historians. Why? dispels many legends and debunks the most prevalent ones, including the claim that the Holocaust never happened.
Hayes brings scholarly wisdom to bear on popular views of the history, challenging some of the most prominent interpretations and arguing that the convergence of multiple forces at a particular moment resulted in this catastrophe.