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Hitler’s Rise to Power. Communism. social structure in which classes are abolished and property is completely controlled oppression free gov’t controls the economy. Socialism. organization of the economy in which the public has access to ownership and production of resources

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Hitler’s Rise to Power

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  • social structure in which classes are abolished and property is completely controlled
  • oppression free
  • gov’t controls the economy
  • organization of the economy in which the public has access to ownership and production of resources
  • wealth is distributed equally
  • takes away from civil liberties
  • the economy is in the hands of individual citizens
  • self-interest
  • a political idea that promotes an authoritarian society
  • nationalists who require strong leadership
  • Nationalist Socialist German Workers’ Party
  • ruled Germany from 1933-1945
  • claimed that international capitalism was Jewish-dominated
  • claimed that capitalists profited from WWI
  • supported middle-class citizens
  • claimed they would better social welfare for Germans of the Aryan race
  • emphasized race, religion, and ethnicity with specifically, anti-Semitism
adolf hitler
Adolf Hitler
  • was born in Austria-Hungary
  • 4th child of 6 children
  • had a troubled life growing up
  • was close to his mother
  • father was authoritarian and frequently beat him
  • younger brother, Edmund, died of measles when Hitler was 10 and it deeply affected him
  • wanted to become an artist, but his father sent him to technical school
troubled years
Troubled Years
  • his father proudly served the Austrian Gov’t, but Hitler supported Germany
  • he and his young friends liked to use the German greeting, "Heil," and sing the German anthem "Deutschland Über Alles", instead of the Austrian Imperial anthem
  • during his 2nd year of school, Hitler and his friends went out drinking and he damaged his school certificate. The certificate was given to the school’s director and Hitler received a scolding that was the most humiliating experience of his life. He was then expelled.
  • he was rejected twice from Art School
on his own
On his own
  • his mother passed away of breast cancer, which affected him emotionally and financially
  • in 1905, he moved to Vienna, Austria ( an area of religious prejudice and racism)
  • he attempted to live as an artist in Vienna
  • he often was a guest for dinner in a noble Jewish house, and he interacted well with Jewish merchants who tried to sell his paintings in Vienna
a german nationalist
A German Nationalist
  • he fought for Germany during WWI and was decorated for bravery
  • discharged from the army in 1920, he began speaking out against the Treaty of Versailles, rival politicians, Jews, and Communists
  • he attracted thousands of followers by speaking against Capitalism, Jews, Communists, Social Democrats, and Liberals
  • imprisoned in 1923 after a failed revolution attempt
  • during his defense speech at trial, he spoke strongly about German Nationalism and gained even more support
effects of versailles
Effects of Versailles

A key element of Hitler's appeal was his ability to evoke a sense of offended national pride caused by the Treaty of Versailles imposed on Germany by the Western Allies.

Germany had lost economically important territory in Europe along with its colonies and in admitting to sole responsibility for the war had agreed to pay a huge reparations bill totaling 132 billion marks.

Most Germans bitterly resented these terms.


rise to power
Rise to Power
  • The political turning point for Hitler came when the Great Depression hit in 1930
  • democratic election took place in 1932. He couldn’t run for public office because he was not a German citizen.
  • became Chancellor of Germany in 1933, or head of state, aka the Fuhrer


rise to power1
Rise to Power
  • Enabling Act (1933) gave Hitler absolute power over Germany expect over the German Roman Catholic Church
  • enacted a “national rebirth”
  • denied German citizens many freedoms (speech, press, privacy) in order to counter what Hitler called Communist terrorism
  • in position to act in the interest of the Nazi party and the Aryan German race


  • Having secured supreme political power, Hitler went on to gain public support by convincing most Germans he was their savior from the economic Depression, the Versailles treaty, communism, the Jews, and other "undesirable" minorities. The Nazis eliminated opposition through a process known as Gleichschaltung ("bringing into line").
new culture
New Culture
  • Nazi policies toward women strongly encouraged them to stay at home to bear children and keep house. Men were considered the “breadwinners.”
  • In a September 1934 speech to the National Socialist Women's Organization, Adolf Hitler argued that for the German woman her "world is her husband, her family, her children, and her home."
  • This policy was reinforced by bestowing the Cross of Honor of the German Mother on women bearing four or more babies.
nazi eugenics
Nazi Eugenics
  • One of the foundations of Hitler's social policies was the concept of racial hygiene.
  • It was based on the idea of eugenics, an “artificial” science that advocated racial purity.
  • Nazi ideals included killing off "life unworthy of life."
  • The first victims were children with physical and developmental disabilities; those killings occurred in a program dubbed Action T4.
  • After a public outcry, Hitler made a show of ending this program, but the killings in fact continued.

Hitler’s order authorizing the T4 program

“Reich Leader Bouhler and Dr Brandt are charges with the responsibility for expanding the authority of physicians, to be designated by name, to the end that patients considered incurable according to the best available human judgement of their state of health, can be granted a mercy death. “

mass murder
Mass Murder
  • Between 1939 and 1945, somewhere between 11 and 14 million people were systematically killed, including about six million Jews
  • Deaths occurred in concentration camps, ghettos and mass executions, among other methods
  • In addition to those gassed to death, many died as a result of starvation and disease while working as slave laborers (sometimes benefiting private German companies).
  • Along with Jews, non-Jewish Poles, Communists and political opponents, members of resistance groups, homosexuals, Gypsies, the physically handicapped and mentally retarded, Soviet prisoners of war, Jehovah's Witnesses, Adventists, trade unionists, and psychiatric patients were killed.
  • One of the biggest centers of mass-killing was the industrial extermination camp complex of Auschwitz-Birkenau.
  • As far as is known, Hitler never visited the concentration camps and did not speak publicly about the killing in precise terms.