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This talk was given on 10 December 2015 in Melbourne, presented by the Mykola Zerov Centre for Ukrainian Studies at Monash University.
In his lecture, Stephan Telka explores the experience of two million ethnic Ukrainian labourers deployed to Nazi Germany during the Second World War. He traces the German use of labourers from Eastern Europe and Nazi Rassenkunde (racial science) to the German experience during the First World War, showing historical precedents to the massive deployment of Ukrainians.
Telka argues that the use of Ukrainian labourers speaks to the flexibility and limits of Nazi racial policy, given the realities of waging war and sustaining the war effort. He also demonstrates the unique situation of Ukrainians, and untangles the confusing regulations and statuses of an ethnic group who found their treatment in the Reich not based on ethnicity like most other groups, but rather on their citizenship, largely Polish and Soviet.
Stephan Telka holds a Master of Arts (European, Russian and Eurasian Studies) from Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada) and a Bachelor of Arts from Queen’s University (Kingston, Canada). He conducted research in the Bundesarchiv in Berlin, the Library and Archives Canada in Ottawa, and the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg. Personal memoirs and family documents also contributed to the source base of his 2008 MA dissertation, Ukrainian Labourers in Nazi Germany, 1939-1945. He currently resides in Ottawa where he works as a public relations consultant for Hill+Knowlton Strategies.
For more information on this lecture visit the Monash University website.