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Dr Waitman Beorn

Senior Lecturer

Department: Humanities


  • History MA April 09 2007
  • History BSc May 27 2000
  • History PhD

Further Information

Dr. Waitman Wade Beorn is currently a Senior Lecturer at Northumbria University.  He is also a consultant and writer for the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.  Dr. Beorn was previously the Director of the Virginia Holocaust Museum in Richmond, VA.  He received his PhD in History from the University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill in 2011 where he worked under the direction of Christopher Browning.  His first book examines the complicity of the German Army in the Holocaust in the Soviet Union, focusing on ground level participation. That book, Marching Into Darkness: The Wehrmacht and the Holocaust in Belarus, has recently been published by Harvard University Press and won the Thomas J. Wilson Memorial Prize for best first book from Harvard Press.  The book also received the Honorable Mention for the Sybil Milton Memorial Book Prize for books on Nazi Germany and the Holocaust from the German Studies Association.  This award is awarded every two years. Marching into Darkness was also a finalist for the Best Academic Publication on Belarus-related Problems for Foreign Authors at the 5th International Congress of Belarusian Studies.  The book has also been published in Polish as Polowanie na Żydów. Zbrodnie Wermachtu. Dr. Beorn is currently preparing a major project on the Janowska concentration camp outside of Lviv, Ukraine.  This book project is tentatively entitled Between the Wires: The Janowska Camp and the Holocaust in Lviv.  He has been awarded an NEH Summer Stipend to support the writing of this book. Dr. Beorn has written a synthetic work, The Holocaust in Eastern Europe: At the Epicenter of the Final Solution (Bloomsbury Press, 2018).

As a member of an interdisciplinary group, Holocaust Geographies, which explores the spatial dynamics of the Holocaust, Dr. Beorn was a co-recipient of a National Science Foundation grant. This group has written an edited volume, Geographies of the Holocaust (Indiana University Press, 2018.)  This is the first book to address the analysis of Holocaust spaces with GIS. He is also active in the digital humanities, currently working on multiple projects in GIS and 3D Modeling of the Holocaust in Eastern Europe.  In addition, he has received a Faculty Global Research with Undergraduates grant to support research with two UVA students on the Holocaust in Lviv.  With his research team, Dr. Beorn is working on three major digital humanities projects in collaboration with the UVA Scholar’s Lab.  The first is the mapping of 17,000 residences for Jews in the Lviv ghetto, the second covers the Holocaust in Eastern Europe as a whole, and the third is a mapping of Himmler’s appointment book.  Dr. Beorn is a co-PI on the successful UVA Learning Technology Incubator grant “Developing Effective Geo-Spatial Digital Pedagogy.” He is also a consultant and collaborator in the Faces of Auschwitz Digital Humanities project.

            In addition to his first book, Dr. Beorn has published work in Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Central European History, German Studies Review, Holocaust Studies: A Journal of Culture and History, Politics and Governance, and the Geographical Review in addition to chapters in several edited volumes.  He has been awarded National Endowment for the Humanities, Fulbright Foundation, Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, and Claims Conference fellowships.

            Dr. Beorn was previously the inaugural Louis and Frances Blumkin Professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies and assistant professor of History at the University of Nebraska- Omaha.  He teaches courses in Holocaust History, Comparative Genocide, German history, Eastern European history, Antisemitism, Modern European History, Jewish History, Historical Methodology, and Public History, and Digital Hisotry

            Outside of academia, he serves as a consultant to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum particularly in their programs aimed at military personnel.  He has co-written a training module in ethical military decision-making for ROTC cadets based on his research.  He also researched and wrote web content for the USHMM online encyclopedia. Dr. Beorn has worked since 2007 with the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York City.  He consulted on their 2009 exhibit “The Shooting of Jews in Ukraine: Holocaust by Bullets.”  In addition, he continues to serve the museum in its American Service Academy Program, leading discussions on the German Army and the Holocaust.  He also served as the Executive Director of the Sam and Frances Fried Holocaust and Genocide Education Fund in Omaha, NE.


            Dr. Beorn is a 2000 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point. 


Key Publications

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • All the Other Neighbors, Beorn, W. Jun 2020, The Wiley Blackwell Companion to the Holocaust, Hoboken, NJ, Wiley-Blackwell
  • Between the Wires, Beorn, W. 2019
  • Jochen Böhler and Robert Gerwarth, editors. The Waffen-SS: A European History, Beorn, W. 1 Feb 2019, In: American Historical Review
  • Understanding the Holocaust in the Context of the Second World War, Beorn, W. 2019, Understanding and Teaching the Holocaust, Madison, University of Wisconsin Press
  • Unraveling Janowska, Beorn, W. 7 Oct 2019, Beyond "Ordinary Men", Paderborn, Verlag Ferdinand Schoeningh GmbH
  • Bodily Conquest, Beorn, W. 3 Jul 2018, Mass Violence in Nazi-Occupied Europe, Bloomington, Indiana University Press
  • Last Stop in Lwów, Beorn, W. 1 Dec 2018, In: Holocaust and Genocide Studies
  • Raz Segal. Genocide in the Carpathians: War, Social Breakdown, and Mass Violence, 1914–1945. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2016. Pp. 232, maps, Beorn, W. Apr 2018, In: Austrian History Yearbook
  • Safe Simulations?, Beorn, W. 30 Sep 2018, Teaching Genocide, New York, NY, Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • The Holocaust in Eastern Europe, Beorn, W. 8 Feb 2018


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