Holocaust and Genocide Studies

The 20th century has been called ‘the century of genocide’, but genocidal violence has continued unabated into the new millennium. Holocaust and Genocide Studies asks students to reflect upon why genocides take place and how people come to participate in mass violence.

Available as a minor only

What is it?

Holocaust and Genocide Studies explores the Holocaust as a turning point in human history, and its relationship to the broader phenomenon of genocide and mass killing. Students examine the causes and effects of modern genocides, and what is now being done to bring about their prevention.

Holocaust and Genocide Studies challenges students to grapple with the histories of other genocides beyond the Holocaust, including such case studies as Armenia, Cambodia, the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and Darfur, as well as questions pertaining to the indigenous populations of the Americas, Africa, Australia and others.

Themes explored across all genocides include: trauma and testimony; the limits of representation; the survivor experience across generations and cultures; the role of the law in adjudicating war crimes; media coverage of atrocity; and the failure to prevent genocide.

How to Study

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Click here for fees, entry requirements and intake information for domestic and international students.

Major: 8 units (48 points) taken over 3 years. This is the area of study you choose to specialise in.

Minor: 4 units (24 points) taken from an area of study that is different to your major.

You must complete 48 credit points (8 units) of your course before you are eligible to go on exchange. Usually this means waiting until your second or third year of study to go on exchange.

We consider you an international student if you are not:

  • an Australian or New Zealand citizen, or
  • an Australian permanent resident.

Note: We consider Australian and New Zealand citizens and Australian permanent residents as local students.

Find out more information on how to apply as an international student

An extended major made up of 12 units (96 points) taken over three years.


Resources and Expertise

Each year the Australian Centre for Jewish Civilisation (ACJC) invites several distinguished overseas experts to contribute to teaching, public engagement and an international Aftermath conference. A prime resource for student engagement and research is the Shoah Visual History Archive, a collection of nearly 52,000 video testimonials of Holocaust survivors and other witnesses. This archive is being augmented by testimonies from the Rwandan genocide.


The ACJC offers research internships for students who have completed their overseas intensive units. In the past students have interned in Poland and Rwanda.

Study Abroad

Holocaust and genocide studies provide a strong offering of overseas units that enable students to integrate their academic inquiry in Australia with intensive on-site study and hands-on experience. These include:

  • Final Journey: Remembering the Holocaust, which explores the modern history of European Jews before and after the Holocaust and includes travel to the major centres of interwar Jewish life in Italy, Germany, Poland and Lithuania.
  • Seeking Justice: South Africa and Rwanda, which brings together students from Monash campuses in Australia and South Africa to study the contemporary histories of post-genocide and post-conflict societies. 


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