Nazism and the Third Reich (War (1938: 1 mil in Su camps, 20,000 in Nazi…
Nazism and the Third Reich
General historiographical developments
Intentionalism vs funcationalism
Momsen, 1960s - polycracy
Exceptionalism and international historical perspectives?
1941 'dual state theory'
Potential angles of critique - did this state remained bifurcated, or were there important lines of cross-over. These two states didn't just operate parallel to each other, with normative state acting as a smoke screen, but actively interaced
has argued that there was no theory of state at all - Nazis spent too much time investing personal power in Hitler to be able to devise a coherent theory of state
The totalitarian paradigm -
argued that, if ever a state did warrant being called totalitarian, that it was the Nazi state, which was able to penetrate into every corner of the Third Reich
Is the label of 'totalitarian' necessarily comparative?
Placing historiography in its contemporary context - e.g. 2016's Norman Ohler Book 'Blitzed'. Talks about an entire country and leadership under the cotrol of methamphetamines and opiates
Attempts to 'explain' the behaviour of political elites and 'ordinary people' in Nazi Germany often lean towards apologist stances
Totalitarianism and the Nazi State
- no theory of state --> just a theory of nation?
The Dual State -
The overlapping of the normative and the bureaucratic state led to power struggles
Hess as 'Leader's Deputy for Party Affairs' and Hans-Hienrich Lammers as the head of the Reich Chancellery
Between 1933 and 1936, 10 new Supreme reich Authorities were created 4, of which actively took away from the authority of the existing Reich Interior Ministry
April 1934 purged the Cvil Service
This bureaucratic overlap was complicated by the personal power and systems of patronage which placed Hitler at the centre of everything
Inherited Hindenburg's personal funds when he died. Gave 17 people pensions of 300 RM each
Existing apparatus of the normative state used to retroactively legitimise the activity of the prerogative state: plebiscites, laws etc.
Creation of the People's Court
Jostling for power between Hitler, the party and the existing normative state?
Wilhelm Frick's attempts to overhaul the Reich interior ministry met with a veto from Hitler, who wanted to reinforce the principle of direct responsibility to him
- Nazism filled an ideological vacuum of religion in the way that it informed the morals, values and customs of everyday life in the Third Reich
Hitler salute replaced Gruss Grot
Denies agency to the existing religious groups which continued to operate within the Nazi state
Niemoller etc. saw their existing religions as compatible with the Nazi state, which offered a unified and nationalised brand of protestantism
Was there a coherent ideology?
Pragmatic and adaptable in terms of its public presentation? The way that anti-British films transitioned from a respected foe, to anti-Semitism to anti-Imperialism as the war progressed
Kershaw's study of the Hitler myth found that anti-Semitism was barely mentioned after 1924
A historic construction - Potsdam Day, Friedrick the Great
How important was ideology?
Ideology was forged in a particular context - wasn't about what beliefs offered intrinsically, but whether they offered solutions to immediate problems in the German state
Fascism: Is an international, comparative perspective possible?
- must be viewed in brutal context. Gulags inspired Nazis Russian revolution descended the whole of Europe into an era of civil war
Han Ulrich Wehler, 1988:
Should be viewed as an exceptional evil and anything less counts as apologism
The question for contemporary historians therefore becomes how to reconcile the imperative of an international and integrated European history, whilst remaining attentive to individual national circumstances, and the possible apologist connotations of comparisons
Then, the question becomes from where uniqueness is derived: Ideology, apparatus of state, socio-economic conditions
recognises that fascism was unique. This uniqueness cannot all be pinned on Hitler, but the specific socio-economic conditions in which German fascism was forged
Compared to Mussolini's Italy - alliance of convenience?
Compared with Franco's Spain
Campe to power without the Falango - Frano's authority more distinctly separate from the party
Both Mussolini and Hitler had been able to legitimise themselves within existing institutions of the normative state
Nazi electoral success, Mussoloni's De Facto leadership of the Po Valley area
Nazi Racial Imperialism
- anti-semitism wasn't central in determining popularity past 1924
- ideologies of racial purity were deeply embedded into German history
Interpretations of Nietzche used by those espousing eugenicist ideas. Bismark had recognised the fragility of the German nation-state and its ethnic composition
- 'eliminationist anti-semitism'
- anti-semitism was not the only continuity we need to be talking about. Socio-eco developments, historic forms of pol leadership in Nazi Germany
- baltics and the black sea, 14 mil killed there. Break out of national frameworks of analysis to truly understand the extent of c20 mass killings
Structural Racial Imperialism - Boycotts, 1934 tax laws, 1935 jewish stock brokers, Deutschbank making 2% commission on dissolving Jewish businesses. Not accumlative radicalisation, but accumulative discrimination based on permanent and structural changes in life in the Third reich
Leadership and the Hitler Myth
Weber's charismatic leadership: Based on repeated demonstrations of success
- Myths consciously devised an integrating force and was a recognition of the need to manufacture consensus . A construction, but one that relied on existing prejudices and beliefs to function
- Hitler and Stalin relied on the state as, when they both died, their myths died with the,
How can we separate an analysis of the role and function of Hitler's leadership from the totalitarian paradigm?
Popular support and mass mobilization
What measures do we have to used as historians?
Plebiscites and elections that were regularly combined with the threat of force and violence
- a 'plebiscitary' disctatorship which sought to construct consensus
The function of mass membership organisatins
A bi-furcated tourism?
Avoided the more bougie resorts and areas and focused on borderlands, which needed tourism and economic rejuvenation. Would avoid Baden-Baden
'ten Commandments for KdF Vacation Travellers' - de-proletization of the German worker
Based on populism and notions of horizontal class-identity, but actually characterised by the widespread embourgeoisement of Nazi society. (cCaplan: cross-class populist appeal)
- indifference paved the road to Auschwitz
- fusion of sociological and historical analysis to show how Nazi Germany affected an upheaval in Micro-social processes
Salute replaced Gruss Grott, Jews banned from using it in 1937
- Military resistance couldn't generate widespread support. Presented as the upper classes or active sabotaging of war efforts
Erickson and Hesche
l, historiographical shift away from churches as a key site of resistance to sites of support
Niemoller and a unified Christianity
1933 - German Christians win the church elections
- Jewish suicides. 1 in 4 a suicide. Wave of 3-4000 suicides during the deportations
r - Reichsmusikkammer,
- cultural revolution
Ownership and censorship - 1939 Eher owned 2/3 of the national press
Architecture - 4 balconies, Berlin Project
- at least managed to sustain consensus
- domrstic crisis didn't lead Nazis to war. Went to war in response to favourable cricumstances
- rearmament the central driver of the economy as, from the start, the nazi state had been focused on its war aims. Destruction of European Jewry should be viewed in an economic framework.
1938: Conscription of labour
1938: 1 mil in Su camps, 20,000 in Nazi camps - war the turning point for Nazi use of terror and violence, when it had always been central to the Stalinist state? 1944 - extension of slave labour camps
- war revolutionised the revolution
A war of nationalist revenge, whereas Soviet War was a war of revolution
Centrality to the Hitler Myth - plebiscitary nature of the war sustained consensus whilst reinforcing the continual success needed in Weber's theory of charismatic leadership
- traditional dip and eco history = Nazis always destined to lose
Violence and Terror
41 Gestapo offices in Frankfurt and Main
Dual terror apparatus - re-arrest Niemoller
Comapred w/ Stalinism - Identity enough to warrant prosecution, avoided the ritual fo the show trial
Foucault' panopticon: Was the difference, when combined with atmosphere of suspicion created by the gestapo, that it wasn't only the state in the centre watching everyone, but was every other citizen
Evans - analysis of newspapers shows that people in Nazi Germany knew about concentration camps, but the nazi media controllled their construction
Nicholaus Waschmann - judiciary and penal system = central
Always on a war footing - secret military sending plan of 35 mil RM in 1933 between Schacht, Bloomberg and Goring. 1935 - bread and meat rationing
1936: Von Papen's gov. in 1932 had increased tax credits . Foreign debt down, interest rates halved, GNP up 81%
An economy never going to be rready for war - Luftwaffe forecasted for 1942, Reichsbahn for 44
A horizontal community' with opportunity for all? White collar employment up 17% whereas blue collar was only up 8.4%. Patronage , 30,000 jobs in the Postal Service given to loyal Nazis
Combined with 'embourgeoisement' of German society
A national SOCIALISM? - Reich Food Estate took 25% of GDP out of private markets. Lack of a comprehensive communist or socialist eco policy means the Nazi state had less of an impact of the Organization of every day life in Nazi Germany vs the Soviet Union
Gender and Family Roles
- forced into public spheres in ways that made them more actively interact with the state
- 13 women working in the east
Only 6 children and above - not as holistic an impact as envisioned?
- letters in war. Not self-consciously styled gender revolutionaries
Comparison with Italian Fascsm
1929: Lateran Pacts of 1929 gave the Vatican, and thus the Catholic Church, its own state
1932: Pope Pius XI declared that Catholic totalitarianism occupied the spiritual zone, whilst fascism dealt with matters of material totalitarianism
Remained dominant in Sicily - Fascists failed to win seats in 1919/1921. Made no concerted attempt to destroy the local power structures in Sicily . Mutual understanding and spheres of influence