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Die fatale Attraktion des Nationalsozialismus: Über die Popularität eines Unrechtregimes

Research output: Book/Report/ProceedingsMonograph


Translated title of the contributionThe Fatal Attraction of National Socialism. The Popularity of a Regime of Injustice
Publication date2013
Place of publicationPaderborn
Number of pages402
ISBN (Print)978-3-506-77676-1
Original languageGerman


There can be not doubt that the economic, social and political crisis at the end of the Weimar Republic, the many material promises a new opposition party could make, and the many opportunities which opened up after 1933 played an important role in the popular appeal of Nazism. However after a long period dominated by structuralist interpretations of the Third Reich, the ideological dimension needs re-emphasis. The monograph shows that the desire for a single communal faith played a central role in the popular appeal of Nazism. Historians have been right in arguing that the Nazi vision of an allegedly better future was vague, unrealistic and partially contradictory, but a close analysis of ego-documents shows that it was precisely their vagueness that made these visions persuasive. The hope for a nation united in a single faith could even make violence against opponents appear as a necessary step towards this goal.