National Book Award Finalist
National Jewish Book Award Finalist
"Disquieting . . . Ms. Lower’s book is partly the study of a youthquake . . . Earlier books about the Holocaust have offered up poster girls of brutality and atrocity . . .[Lower’s] insight is to track more mundane lives, and to argue for a vastly wider complicity."
—New York Times
"Intriguing and chilling . . . feminism run amok."
"Compelling. . . By focusing on the role of ordinary women — rather than the already notorious female concentration camp guards — Lower brings to the forefront an unexplored aspect of the Holocaust. . . Lower’s careful research proves that the capacity for indifferent cruelty is not reserved for men — it exists in all of us."
"A virtuosic feat of scholarship."
"Well-researched . . . As gripping and eye-opening as it is chilling."
"Often harrowing and even disturbing... [Hitler's Furies] shines a stark light on the ordinary women who accompanied the “ordinary men” of Christopher Browning’s landmark study."
—New Statesman (UK)
"Lower sheds some much-needed light on an aspect of WWII history that has remained in the shadows for decades . . . Surprising and deeply unsettling, the book is a welcome addition to the literature on the Holocaust.”—Booklist
“Hitlers Furies will be experienced and remembered as a turning point in both women’s studies and Holocaust studies.”—Timothy Snyder, author of Bloodlands
“Hitler's Furies is the first book to follow the biographical trajectories of individual women whose youthful exuberance, loyalty to the Führer, ambition, and racism took them to the deadliest sites in German-occupied Europe. Drawing on immensely rich source material, Lower integrates women perpetrators and accomplices into the social history of the Third Reich, and illuminates them indelibly as a part of post-war East and West German memory that has been, until this book, unmined.”—Claudia Koonz, author of Mothers in the Fatherland
“Hitler’s Furies is a long overdue and superb addition to the history of the Holocaust. The role of women perpetrators during the Final Solution has been too much glossed over. Lower’s book provides an important and stunning corrective. It is a significant addition to our understanding of the role of ordinary Germans in the Reich’s genocide.”—Deborah Lipstadt, author of Eichmann on Trial
“Lower shifts away from the narrow focus on the few thousand female concentration camp guards who have been at the center of previous studies of female culpability in Nazi crimes and identifies the cluster of professions—nurses, social workers, teachers, office workers—that in addition to family connections brought nearly one-half million women to the German East and into close proximity with pervasive Nazi atrocities. Through the lives of carefully-researched individuals, she captures a spectrum of career trajectories and behavior. This is a book that artfully combines the study of gender with the illumination of individual experience.”—Christopher R. Browning, author of Ordinary Men