Graduation Year

Spring 2014

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

History

Reader 1

Jonathan Petropoulos

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Rights Information

© 2014 Monica Cason

Abstract

It is well documented that during the course of World War II, Nazi leader Adolf Hitler oversaw the plunder of countless works of art throughout Europe. The purpose of this paper is to explore the rationale behind the systematic art theft, understand the international politics and policy of restitution, and consider its geopolitical significance. The relationship between art and the various methods in which it intersects with international politics has been a guiding theme. As we quickly approach a more interconnected world, it has become increasingly necessary to explore how past injustices may continue to influence current diplomatic efforts. Through the analysis of various case studies identifying points of contention between nations, unhealed resentment over WWII-era injustices were identified and explored in greater depth. Although countries have made progress towards mediation and restitution, there is still much to be done in order to repair international relationships. Moving forward, it is essential to advance these efforts towards a mutually agreeable resolution.

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