"The Last Million: Europe's Displaced Persons from World War to Cold War"

Sep 24, 2020

Our guest is David Nasaw, the bestselling author and noted historian who, until last year, served as the Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. Professor of History at the CUNY Graduate Center. He joins us to discuss his new book, "The Last Million: Europe's Displaced Persons from World War to Cold War." It offers a far-reaching history of the one million refugees left behind in Germany after WWII, a disparate group that Nasaw refers to as "the last million." As explained in this careful documentation of postwar displacement and statelessness, the fate of "the last million" has been largely unknown, or hidden, until now. Indeed, by 1952, these people were widely scattered around the world. But how and why did this diaspora come about, and how did this diaspora affect the Cold War? As per a starred review of this book in Library Journal: "Nasaw does a masterful job of bringing to light the lasting individual and global consequences of policies and attitudes surrounding 'the last million'.... A thought-provoking, highly recommended perspective on a complex and largely overlooked people and period of modern history."