Williams, Maurice 1944-
Williams, Maurice 1944-
Born 1944, in Perth, Western Australia, Australia. Education: Texas Christian University, Ph.D.
Writer, historian, and educator. University of Maryland's European Division, Heidelberg, Germany, former member of faculty; Notre Dame University, Nelson, British Columbia, Canada, former member of faculty; University of British Columbia Okanagan (formerly Okanagan University College), Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada, professor of history.
Gau, Volk, and Reich: Friedrich Rainer and the Paradox of Austrian National Socialism, Verlag des Geschichtsvereines für Kärnten (Klagenfurt, Austria), 2005.
My Internment and Testimony at the Nuremberg War Crimes Trial: The Account of Friedrich Rainer, Austrian Nazi, Edwin Mellen Press (Lewiston, NY), 2006.
Myra's Men: Building the Kettle Valley Railway, Myra Canyon to Penticton, Myra Canyon Trestle Restoration Society (Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada), 2008.
Writer and historian Maurice Williams, who was born in 1944 in Perth, Australia, has worked at the University of Maryland's European Division and at the University of British Columbia, in Okanagan, Canada, where he is a professor of history. His research interests include political history, especially that of socialism, and European studies. Williams's Gau, Volk, and Reich: Friedrich Rainer and the Paradox of Austrian National Socialism, also published in German, was published in 2005. The text narrates the life and political activity of Friedrich Rainer, a member of Nazi party, throughout his extensive operations in Austria and Southern Germany. Reviewer John C. Swanson stated in his article for the Canadian Journal of History, "The book is a success as a description of Rainer's life." Rainer, a lawyer by profession, held powerful positions in Austria as a member of the Third Reich during the Second World War and followed orders directly from Hitler. Williams illustrates the degree of involvement and the reach of the Nazi regime in Austria through Rainer's actions. Evan B. Bukey, in an essay for the Austrian History Yearbook, observed: "While Rainer subsequently reversed course by passing out bribes and extending social services to Slovenian collaborators, Williams convincingly demonstrates that he did so for purely tactical reasons." Bukey also reported, "Williams carefully assesses the deliberations of the Communist show trial, concluding that the proceedings were fair, the verdict just." While Rainer was convicted at the Nuremburg trials and eventually hanged, Williams "reveals that Rainer managed to escape the gallows until 1950 by writing detailed position papers for his captors on topics ranging from Austrian politics to international affairs," according to Bukey. Kelly McFall, a History: Review of New Books contributor, noted, "Williams' story illustrates the importance of Rainer's Habsburg upbringing" and that the "work is clearly a case study, keeping the focus on Rainer while eschewing lengthy analysis of the broader movement." Williams places Rainer's history within the larger political context of the Nazi agenda in Eastern Europe, and McFall found that this "biography offers a significant academic contribution." Williams continues Rainer's story in My Internment and Testimony at the Nuremberg War Crimes Trial: The Account of Friedrich Rainer, Austrian Nazi, which was published in 2006 by the Edwin Mellen Press. The text, according to the publisher, "provides a different perspective on the important Nuremberg war crimes trial of 1945 and 1946." Williams uses Rainer's own writings to examine the trial of other defendants as well as to discern the truth regarding Rainer's own incarceration.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Austrian History Yearbook, January 1, 2007, Evan B. Bukey, review of Gau, Volk, and Reich: Friedrich Rainer and the Paradox of Austrian National Socialism, p. 278.
Canadian Journal of History, December 22, 2006, John C. Swanson, review of Gau, Volk, and Reich, p. 572.
Central European History, March 1, 2007, Jeremy Noakes, review of Gau, Volk, and Reich, p. 169.
History: Review of New Books, March 22, 2006, Kelly McFall, review of Gau, Volk, and Reich, p. 91.
Mellen Press Web site,http://www.mellenpress.com/ (May 28, 2008), synopsis of My Internment and Testimony at the Nuremberg War Crimes Trial: The Account of Friedrich Rainer, Austrian Nazi.
University of British Columbia Okanagan Web site,http://web.ubc.ca/okanagan/ (May 28, 2008), author profile.