Holocaust denial or Holocaust revisionism?

English » Holocaust Denial » Holocaust denial or Holocaust revisionism?



The term "denier" is objected to by the people to whom it is applied, who claim to be "revisionist". The latter term is deliberately misleading. While historical revisionism is the re-examination of accepted history, with an eye towards updating it with newly discovered, more accurate, and less-biased information, "deniers" have been criticised for seeking evidence to support a preconceived theory, omitting substantial facts.

 

Historical revisionism is the approach that history as it has been traditionally told, may not be entirely accurate and should hence be revised accordingly. Historical revisionism in this sense is a well-accepted and mainstream part of history studies.

 

Holocaust "deniers" maintain that they apply proper revisionist principles to Holocaust history, and therefore the term Holocaust revisionism is appropriate for their point of view. Their critics, however, disagree and prefer the term Holocaust denial. As the historian Gordon McFee wrote in his essay Why Revisionism isn't:

 

"Revisionists" depart from the conclusion that the Holocaust did not occur and work backwards through the facts to adapt them to that preordained conclusion. Put another way, they reverse the proper methodology [...], thus turning the proper historical method of investigation and analysis on its head."