Heinrich August Winkler
After attending a Gymnasium in Ulm, he studied history, political science, philosophy and public law at Münster, Heidelberg and Tübingen. In 1970 he became professor at the Free University of Berlin. From 1972 to 1991 he was professor at the University of Freiburg. Since 1991 he has held a chair of modern history at the Humboldt University Berlin. He is a member of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), and has ties to numerous prominent politicians within that party, including former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder. He is the author of a book detailing a comprehensive political history of the Weimar Republic, among others.
During the Historikerstreit, Winkler was a leading critic of Ernst Nolte. In an essay first published in the Frankfurter Rundschau newspaper on 14 November 1986, Winkler wrote of Nolte’s essay "The Past That Will Not Pass" that:
“Those who read the Frankfurter Allgemeine all the way through to the culture section were able to read something under the title “The Past That Will Not Pass” that no German historian to date had noticed: that Auschwitz was only a copy of a Russian original-the Stalinist Gulag Archipelago. For fear of the Bolsheviks’ Asiatic will to annihilate, Hitler himself committed an “Asiatic deed”. Was the annihilation of the Jews a kind of putative self-defence? Nolte’s speculation amounts to that.”
Writing of Nolte’s claim that Weizmann’s letter was a “Jewish declaration of war”, Winkler stated that “No German historian has ever accorded Hitler such a sympathetic treatment”.
- "From Social Protectionism to National Socialism: The German Small-Business Movement in Comparative Perspective," The Journal of Modern History Vol. 48, No. 1, March 1976
- In Search of Germany (with Michael Mertes and Steven Muller). Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick and London 1996, ISBN 1-56000-880-6
- Germany: The Long Road West. Vol. 1: 1789-1933. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2006, ISBN 978-0-19-926597-8
- Germany: The Long Road West vol. 2: 1933-1990. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2007, ISBN 978-0-19-926598-5
- Winkler, Heinrich August “Eternally in the Shadow of Hitler?” pages 171-176 from Forever In The Shadow of Hitler? edited by Ernst Piper, Humanities Press, Atlantic Highlands, 1993 page 173
- Prof. Dr. Heinrich August Winkler Institute für Geschichtswissenschaften. Western history staff curricula vitae. Retrieved July 27, 2011 (German)