The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Newsgroups: alt.revisionism,soc.history,soc.culture.jewish,talk.politics.misc
Subject: Proving the Holocaust: Revisionists or Deniers? (Conclusion)
Summary: Dr. Michael Shermer's article on Holocaust revisionism,
         "Proving the Holocaust: The Refutation of Revisionism & the 
         Restoration of History," _Skeptic_, Vol. 2, No. 4, Altadena, 
         California, June, 1994. Published by the Skeptics Society, 
         2761 N. Marengo Ave., Altadena, CA 91001, (818) 794-3119.
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Followup-To: alt.revisionism
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[Followups directed to alt.revisionism]

Part 15: [SIDEBAR] Revisionists or Deniers? [Conclusion]

By the specific definition of the Holocaust accepted by most historians,
revisionists are, by definition, Holocaust deniers, since it is the
three components of intentionality, gas chambers, and six million killed
that they are denying. I have decided, however, to refer to them as
Holocaust "revisionists" for several reasons: (1) this is what they have
always been called by historians (cf, Vidal-Naquet, 1992) until Deborah
Lipstadt began her semantic campaign to call them deniers (revisionists
use the term "exterminationists" in angry rebuttal); (2) while
professional historians do revise the past and are therefore
"revisionists," they are just called historians because it is an
understood assumption about all scholarly history that we are always
revising the past. When one refers to the "Holocaust revisionists,"
everyone knows who is being addressed. (I tried for awhile to relabel
the creationists as "evolution deniers," but it did not stick.) In
either case--revisionists or deniers--it is not a constructive use of
time to debate this semantic issue. I will agree to call them
revisionists if they will agree to call us historians. This is
appropriate since most of them have not had professional training in the
historical sciences.

                          Work Cited

   Shermer, Michael. "Proving the Holocaust: The Refutation of
      Revisionism & the Restoration of History," _Skeptic_, Vol. 2,
      No. 4, Altadena, California, June, 1994. Published by the
      Skeptics Society, 2761 N. Marengo Ave., Altadena, CA 91001,
      (818) 794-3119.

_Skeptic_ magazine:
http://www.skeptic.com

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