The Politics of Repressed Guilt: The Tragedy of Austrian Silence (Edinburgh University Press, 2018)

Description: Drawing on the work of Hannah Arendt and Theodor W. Adorno, this book illustrates the relevance and applicability of a political discussion of guilt and democracy. It appropriates psychoanalytic theory to analyse court documents of Austrian Nazi perpetrators as well as recent public controversies surrounding Austria's involvement in the Nazi atrocities and ponders how the former agents of Hitlerite crimes and contemporary Austrians have dealt with their guilt.

Exposing the defensive mechanisms that have been used to evade facing involvement in Nazi atrocities, Leeb considers the possibilities of breaking the cycle of negative consequences that result from the inability to deal with guilt. Leeb shows us that only by guilt can individuals and nations take responsibility for their past crimes, show solidarity with the victims of crimes, and prevent the emergence of new crimes.

A review symposia about the book appeared in: 
Critical Horizons (vol. 21, no. 1, 2020), 63-79. 

The book was reviewed in: 
 Free Associations (no. 84, December 2021), 77-88. 

 Constellations (vol. 28, no. 3, September 2021), 447-452.

 Perspectives on Politics (vol. 18, no. 2, June 2020), 603-605.

 Philosophy in Review (vol. 40, no. 2, May 2020), 67–69. 

5. Journal of Austrian Studies (vol. 52, no. 4, Winter 2019), 122-124. 

        An interview about the book appeared (in German) in Wina (2018).

        You can order the book from:
        1. the Edinburgh University Press website 

        2. the Amazon website