The new special topic issue (Volume 11 issue 2 and 3) of the Journal of Genocide Research dealing with New Perspectives on Soviet Mass Violence is now out. It includes the article I co-wrote with Eric J. Schmaltz and Ronald J. Vossler, "'In our hearts we felt the sentence of death': Ethnic German recollections of mass violence in the USSR, 1928-1948," pp. 323-354. The abstract of the article is reproduced below.
This article seeks to examine the mass violence unleashed by Joseph Stalin and his regime against the USSR's ethnic Germans. It endeavors to comprehend how Soviet policies of repression progressed and intensified to the extreme detriment of this nationality group. It covers the tumultuous period between 1928 and 1948, when Soviet policies overall coarsened considerably, from the implementation of Stalin's First Five-Year Plan to the government decree banishing several Soviet peoples in their virtual entirety, including the ethnic Germans, to “eternal” exile east of the Urals. This process shifted from class-based reasons to ethnic ones as the 1930s progressed. The increasingly racialized nature of Soviet mass violence targeted the ethnic Germans as a large diaspora community ethnically linked to Nazi Germany, a country perceived as an ideological and military threat. During Stalin's war against the Soviet countryside in the early 1930s, ethnic German villagers at times felt compelled to conduct mass protests and even revolts against the authorities. Meanwhile, both an emerging ethnic German elite and ordinary German farmers and workers wrote about worsening conditions under Stalin. Besides petitioning the Soviet government, they delivered letters and various writings to friends and relatives by way of a vast underground network at home and abroad, and their relatives sometimes answered in return. A growing body of Soviet archival records and academic literature treating the Stalinist period has generally validated and expanded upon what the ethnic group as early as the 1920s and 1930s had exposed about mass terror under Stalin's regime.