Adolf Eichmann in Jerusalem


Trial witness Leon Welczilker describes mass executions

The trial of Adolf Eichmann began in Jerusalem on this date in 1961.

Frye in “Literature as a Critique of Pure Reason” on Hannah Arendt’s Eichmann in Jerusalem:

We may recall the impression given to Hannah Arendt by the experience of attending the Eichmann trial, as recorded in her book, Eichmann in Jerusalem. What disconcerted her about Eichmann was not a sense of great wickedness or even of great stupidity, for either of which she would have been prepared. She felt rather that, so to speak, he wasn’t there: something impossible to define, but nevertheless at the core of real humanity, was simply missing. She developed from this a conception of “the banality of evil, which, I take it, was a philosopher’s way of putting clothes over the naked metaphor of “lost soul.” (Myth and Metaphor, 127-3)

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