Based on current research findings, it spans an era of economic, social, and political forces that made possible the rise and growth of Nazism. Coverage includes material on anti-Jewish policies and the involvement of ordinary Germans in the Holocaust, the social composition and membership of the Nazi party and its leaders, the mechanisms of terror and control, the machinery of the Final Solution, and the Jewish view of the Holocaust. An in-depth look at Adolf Hitler, the man and the leader, examines influences on his early development, character traits, oratorical skills, messianic pretensions, and provides an analysis of his ideology based on extensive quotations from his writings and speeches. For anyone trying to get more background into a panoramic view of 20th Century German history. While the war is mentioned within the context of looking at Nazi history, the book focuses on
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Well-written, very informative, and not too long at pages. Spielvogel skims over the military aspects and does an excellent job of covering the political and social situation in Germany from to why Weimar failed, why the Hitler and the Nazis gained popularity and power, why the Nazis failed, and how all of it impacted Germans at different points through this time period. If you read only one book about Nazi Germany then read Assigned reading for my Nazi Germany university class.
If you read only one book about Nazi Germany then read this one. It gives an overview of Nazi Germany and it is easy to read and get throuh. However, it can be a little dry at times since it is pretty much a textbook. Jul 14, K. Colyard rated it really liked it Recommended to K. Spielvogel s Hitler and Nazi Germany A History is an excellent text, covering nearly seventy-five years of German history in approximately three hundred pages.
Stretching from Germanys beginnings as a unified nation in to its surrender to the Allies on 7 May , the text provides a look at aspects of the countrys history and culture which is shockingly detailed, given its brevity. Take, for example, this passage on Nazi artwork The mere rendering of numerous details from everyday Jackson J. Take, for example, this passage on Nazi artwork— The mere rendering of numerous details from everyday life, however, was insufficient to meet the National Socialist ideological goals.
Rather, those details had to be inflated to convey a deeper National Socialist message. Portraits of farmers, hunters, and wood cutters were supposed to convey figures close to nature, examples of a healthy and pure race. Artisans symbolized the importance of work. Representations of mother and child, children, and family circles were supposed to present the sacred, eternal values important to the Aryan race. Landscape paintings were intended to portray the sacredness of German soil and the German fatherland.
Female nudes were to be vibrant beings demonstrating the biological value of the individual as a precondition for racial rebirth. In larger sections of the book, he keeps with this method of hyper-functionality by making his topic sentences condensable into paragraphs such as the one above. Hitler and Nazi Germany: A History is organized incredibly well. Although Nazi fanatics, they were often unable to communicate, were inefficient, and tended to lose their nerve in emergencies.
Yet Spielvogel gives no evidence as to how exactly their speeches were ineffective, or extraneous. For a text peppered heavily with block quotations, Hitler and Nazi Germany: A History falls short on this point. Similarly, there are times when it seems that Spielvogel has, in the interest of brevity, left out pertinent information. A knowing audience reading Hitler and Nazi Germany: A History will notice its failure to mention two critical aspects in the early days of the Nazi Party.
This position was dramatically reversed in July , when the new Nazi government concluded a concordat agreement with the Roman Catholic church leadership. The church agreed to recognize the legitimacy of the Hitler regime and to eliminate all the political and social organizations of German Catholicism. Despite these flaws—which truly are a few black spots on the record of a superb book—readers will enjoy the snarky tone Spielvogel takes on when talking about some of the more ridiculous aspects of history.
Overall, Hitler and Nazi Germany: A History proves an enjoyable read for those interested in its subject matter. The author weaves together information-dense sentences into easy-to-read prose, making it a surprisingly comprehensive history for its size, and an exceptional starting point for students of history. While its practicality at times makes it daunting, it also lends itself well as a quick reference work.
Note: This review was originally submitted to Dr.
Hitler and Nazi Germany : a history
Hitler and Nazi Germany: A History