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HIST3025 Hitler and the National Socialist Ideology. Lecture 9: Leadership, Propaganda, Mobilization 2 May 2013. Hitler and Weimar Republic. Rejected Weimar Republic : Saw Nov 1918 revolution as Jewish-inspired Blamed republicans to have accepted armistice and Versailles Treaty

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hist3025 hitler and the national socialist ideology
HIST3025Hitler and the National Socialist Ideology

Lecture 9:

Leadership, Propaganda,

Mobilization

2 May 2013

hitler and weimar republic
Hitler and Weimar Republic

Rejected Weimar Republic:

  • Saw Nov 1918 revolution as Jewish-inspired
  • Blamed republicans to have accepted armistice and Versailles Treaty
  • Held republicans responsible for chaotic, inflation-ridden post-war German economy
hitler and democracy
Hitler and Democracy

Rejected democracy in principle:

  • Predicted rule of inferior people
  • Expected marginalisation of natural leaders
  • Foresaw levelling-down of political talents
  • Saw parliamentarians as mediocre figures constantly adapting policies to masses
  • Regarded parliamentarians as opportunists, irresponsible for wrong decisions, “gangsters”
hitler s leadership principle
Hitler’s ‘Leadership Principle’
  • No discussion (democratic principle) but obedience to leaders
  • No down-top (democratic principle) but top- down authority for leaders
  • No limited responsibility (parliamentarian principle) but unlimited authority for leaders
hitler s model leader
Hitler’s Model Leader
  • Theoretician: Correct theoretical insights in laws of history as racial struggle
  • Organiser: Good organisational talents
  • Psychologist: Able transmitter of ideas to masses

→ Combination of all = Great Leader / Great Man

hitler and propaganda
Hitler and Propaganda

Based on analysis of Germany’s failings in WW I

→ Paved way to Nov 1918 revolution

→ Absolute necessary tool for future leader to be able to move masses

  • Must not appeal to reason but to emotions (‘the heart’)
  • Must create ‘mass suggestion’ in crowds
hitler s mass suggestion
Hitler’s Mass Suggestion
  • No deception but articulation of established beliefs
  • No dupe but mobilization of already latent thoughts

= Mobilization of ‘healthy’ national sentiment

= Proclamation of ‘general will’ by ‘one man’

hitler s ns state
Hitler’s NS State
  • Militarist & authoritarian
  • Dominant master with totalitarian ambitions
  • Mobilising ‘healthy members’
  • Suppressing enemies

= Totalitarianism PLUS:

  • Head of broad process of national mobilization
  • Agent of biological revival of race
  • Strong position from ability to reflect popular sentiments (resentments)
popular resentments in 1920s
Popular resentments in 1920s
  • Extreme nationalist resentments:

 Versailles Treaty: ‘War Guilt’ clause

 Jews; Socialists; Marxists; Poles; ‘November criminals’; republicans; mentally/physically ills; socially marginalised groups

= Popular beliefs in German public in 1920s

1920s crisis and mein kampf
1920s Crisis and Mein Kampf
  • Expression of general bitterness after war
  • Unwillingness of accepting military defeat
  • Disorientation in democracy & economic crisis
  • Search for ‘scape-goats’ for disaster & chaos

= Mein Kampfas crucial document of societal crisis in Germany in 1920s