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Nazi Germany midterm review

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McMaster University
Pamela Swett

Nazi Germany Notes Germnay and German Jew, 1900 - Industrialization and Urbanization - demographic explosion - cities under pressure - Jews after Emancipation - economic upward mobility - Limits of integration - Ostjuden as outsiders - by 1900 left behind authourtarin - William II was absolute ruler monarchical constituitonism - chancellor answered to Kyzer; parliament delt with taxes and so King could not rule without parliament - All men could vote (universal manhood suffrage) - was not democracy but culture that supported democracy - largest party: Catholic center party - most of the population were social democrats - new civil code that protected the right of minorities - economy was in good shape - Germans were the most educated: flourishing culture - 1900 most educated enlightened nation - throughout 1900-1933 large population growth - 1871: unification of Germany; 1800 foreigners; 1910 1.3 foreigners - life expectancy and mortality was down and birth rates were up adding to population growth - along Rhine river # of cities growing because people moving from rural to urban areas coal and steel production - infrastructure was not there extensive building which meant rapid change in cities romanticized farms as a result of poor infrastructure - middle class reformers see problems in cities and want to fix them because view cities as cultural centers - Jews moved to cities economic and social/cultural opportunities JEWS - 1860: various kingdoms pass own legislation that gave Jews individuals rights emancipation: rights of citizenship - 1871: adopted legislature; million in Germany (1% of population) - German religious freedom meant a lot of Jews wanted to go to Germany - Intermarriage was not uncommon marry Christians - Jews and gentiles were interacting - Jew tended not to convert - they lived mostly in rural areas making a living as traders and money lenders before emancipation could not own property therefore there was no option of farming so they were forced into these less respected positions - Peddlers: coming around with household supplies - After emancipation can now own property; not going to be farmers because they had no experience but had experience in money lending and business - use business experience and move to cities (because of industrialization); buy land and open up shops - number of Jews tripled in Berlin - some became very wealthy; as a group they have a high rate of social mobility - Walther Rathenau very wealthy: 20% of the wealthiest families in Germany were Jews - once they began to earn well they put their children through schools 1900 10% of all university students were Jews demonstrates high levels of social mobility - oldest sons take over family business; youngest would go into professions journalism and academia were popular options - however, they had difficulty attaining higher positions reach glass ceiling e.g. only 2% of full professors were Jews: could not be full prof in literature because there was an assumption that the integrated Jews were still different and could not get in touch with German culture and literature in the same way - well integrated mid/upper class Jews played large role in German development - there were still many poor Jews many were new arrivals from E.Europe - Ostjuden: were new arrivals from E. Europe. They dressed differently and spoke Yiddish did not assimilate. They remain quiet poor and even integrated Jews disliked their presence - anti-Semitism easily target marginalized Jew Anti-Semitism in Germany, 1900 - form of anti-Semitism social, religious, economic; the new racist biological variant - political anti-Semitism: Adolf Stoechers Christian social party Heinrich von Treitschke the jew is our misfortune - Jewish response: acceptance of ethnic idenitity - social anti-Semitism: characterizes German elites; sociall inferior. Happy to do business but felt that they were socially beneath them. Otto von Bismark personal namker was Jew they were very close but Bismarks son always made anti-semitic jokes towards him - Religious Anti-Semitism: peasantry and lower-middle classes jews had murdered Jesus. Harship blamed on jews in the area as a result of killing jesus. Jews were the devil incarnated. This view was stronger amonst protestants than Catholics because the catholics were also a minority - Economic Anti-Semitism: small shop keepers and artisans pushed out of the economy as result of flourishing jew businesses (department stores etc..) Blame jews as symbols of capitalism - Racist-Biological: accompanied the rise of intolerant nationalism divided world into superior and non superior races claim in scientific fact. Also, aggressive and dangerous races set out to weaken Germany (undermind social/biological fabrication in order to dominate it) intermarriage now seen as potential downfall of Germany because insuperior gene will weaken the superior genes. adopted by National Socialist party: more radical; wanted to eject the parasitic race from all areas of life - with religion jews could convert and becomes Christian; with first three they were not as much of a danger race based they could not escape from - Biological: a jew will always be a jew. Nothing to do to make it more acceptable except get rid of it. - Why Jews? cultural differences seen as suspicious; how could they be German when they have ties to so many other lands suspicious Political Anti-Semitism - National Socialist party was not the first anti-semitic party - Christian Social Party 1878: - all economic hardship blaimed on Jews, as well as socialism - as economy picked up in 1890s party lost popular support - there after no party stood behind anti-semitism as a policy but there was still the Jewish Question - 1879: jews are our misfortune: gave legitamcy to these beliefs because well respected academic - farmers-league interest group for this occupation was anti-semitic but not all farmers and craftsman were anti-semitic. This anti-semitism was dying out as German Jews were protected by the law - Jewish Response: acceptance of an ethnic identity Jewish Germans Germans who were Jewish; Germaness and Jewishness were both apart of their identity - Zionist: those who felt they would never integrate create jewish state. They were among the minority. The majority were optimistic and were proud and grateful to be German sure there would soon be no jewish question Foundation of Nazi Ideology - Can we speak of Nazi Ideology? - guiding principles of National Socialism: anti-Semitism, Lebensraum (living space), racial hygiene (establishment of the volksgemeinschaft) - summary Nazi project - Nazi ideology synthesis: will to violence/ anti-communism/ leadership principle - Mein Kamph: not Nazi ideology - Nazi depicted as anti-intellectual book burnings Lebensraum: drive to east to secure new lands for German survival Racial Hygiene: purification of the race. Eugenics campaign to purify the race: getting rid of members of the race who weaken it homosexuals, alcoholics, disabled etc.. Early-Mid 1920s - in response to defeat WW1 and economic crisis Nazi party set out to destroy the republic and unite the nation in a new racial community Volksgemienschaft - claim they create a revolution united under one goal to build volksgemeinschaft get rid of those who dont belong; once strengthened would embark on war to claim est and reclaim humiliation - anti-Semites believed that Germany could not survive unless all Jews would leave exploitation would eventually persuade them to leave not a reflection of role of Jews in Germany. Jewish was a symbol for everything hated and feared - lebensraum as concept was the oldest: look to low populated lands to the east for natural resources believed people in the east were inferior therefore should/could be dominated by superior Germans idea of Expansion not German - racial hygiene also common some believed it was a good idea to leave sick untreated so only the strong survive; some people were pacifist because they believed that another war would kill off the strongest but they were ok with killing the mentally ill. - Eugenics: policy to manage population and improve racial stalk there are some who are less valuable and others who are more Nazi Ideology synthesis - national socialism was the most violent major political tool to get what they wanted - others tried to get what they wanted through legal means - most popular support came from young people who did not get to support/fight for Germany in WW1 - violence is the duty of all members of the race Leadership principle: Hitler leadership changed after released from prison Fuehrerprinzip also demanded total obedience for he was the only one who understands Germanys future Anti communism: so central to political movement is a danger so need to save our self from this future by choosing alternative who will do anything for the race with a great leader who is the only one who can lead the party to success Nazi Socialism, 1919-1933 Early Nazis 1919 to 1924 - the founding party: the German workers party: hope to build socialism through Nationalism Jews and international capitalism were road blocks - Hitler early role = was working with the Army spying on political activist went to meeting and joined in Dec.1919: goal was to mobilize workers nature racial superiority and nationalism - Weimar Republic was the first democracy - voelkish politics: nationalism; anti-capitalism. Most targeted lower/middle class but also tried to reach workers other workers parties came from the left - tried to promote national program: not just local also outside Munich - old middle class: shopkeepers and artisans department stores and factory work changed the
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