Scholar of the Week
Brad Nichols, a graduate student in the History Department, has won a 2014 Cummings Foundation Fellowship at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, starting August 2014. He will use the fellowship to mine further unique sources held at the museum for his research. He currently holds a graduate fellowship for 2013-14 at the UT Humanities Center.
Brad’s research examines Nazi racial policies at their most paradoxical: he examines how on the one hand Nazi S.S. racial “scientific experts” were convinced that many Eastern Europeans had “German blood” which needed to be reintegrated into Germany, while on the other hand being deathly afraid of the contamination of the German body politic that might result. The outcome was a strange “re-Germanization” process, which selected some Eastern Europeans for preferential treatment, but then subjected them to abuse or even extermination when the results were disappointing.
In 2012, he won the UT Chancellor’s award for Extraordinary Professional Practice. Brad has also published a chapter in the new edited volume, Routledge History of the Holocaust (2011), entitled “Forging the Aryan Utopia: Nazi Racial Policy in Occupied Poland, 1939-1945.” It is noteworthy that this volume also includes a chapter by the dean of Holocaust studies, Christopher Browning. Brad’s previous scholarly award record includes UT’s first award of a Berlin Program Fellowship, the very best fellowship for the study of German history, which allowed him a year of archival research in Germany.