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עמוד בית
Tue, 25.06.24

Original Articles

IMAJ | volume 23

Journal 3, March 2021
pages: 165-168

The Kristallnacht Pogrom. The End of Jewish Medical Study in Germany: Who were the Last Jewish Medical Students in Berlin?

Summary

Background:

In April 1937 it was forbidden for German Jewish students to sit for examinations. However, a few Jewish medical students were able to continue studying at Berlin University. The order to expel all Jewish students from German Universities was published on the morning after Kristallnacht (November 1938) and was strictly imposed.

Objectives:

To identity the last Jewish medical students who managed, in spite of the severe restrictions, to continue their study and apply for the examinations in Berlin from summer 1937 through 1938.

Methods:

Reviews of the dissertations written in the medical faculty of Berlin during 1937–1938 identified the Jewish students. We presented their demographic and academic characteristics.

Results:

Sixteen Jewish students were identified: six Germans, six Americans, and four Eastern Europeans. Their average age was 18.7 ± 1.0 years, 22.5 ± 2.0 years, and 20.8 ± 2.5 years, respectively. The last Jewish student took the exams in July 1938 and submitted a thesis one month later. One German student was half Jewish. Five gained the rights to take the examinations as foreign students by renouncing their German citizenship. They were the main group affected by the government’s restrictions. The American and the Eastern European students were more protected by law.

Conclusions:

Each of those groups had different academic careers. The Americans were the last Jewish students allowed to study in Germany. It seems that they were less aware of the national socialist atmosphere in the medical faculty in Berlin during 1937–1938.

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