History of Nazi Germany

This course grapples with crucial questions and novel approaches to one of the most intensely researched topics of the 20th century: the history of Nazi Germany. The course provides a broad overview of the history of the National Socialist movement and regime from political, social, and cultural perspectives. We start with the origins and ideological foundations of National Socialism as a political movement against the background of World War 1 and the Weimar Republic. We then discuss the growth and rise to power of the National Socialist Party and Hitler’s role in this process. Following this, we focus on the Nazi state: topics include the SS and the police apparatus, the forging of the “Volksgemeinschaft” and the “racial state,” persecution of Jews and other minorities, as well as the economic policies of Nazi Germany. We will also consider the nature of everyday life, youth, and family, entertainment, and leisure in the Third Reich and situate Nazi politics in the context of gender and sexuality. Finally, we are concerned with the question of collaboration and resistance in Nazi Germany and with the eventual collapse and defeat of the Third Reich. Throughout the class, we investigate perspectives from “inside” Nazi Germany, focusing on victims, perpetrators, and onlookers. In doing that, we will consider both top-down and bottom-up perspectives; in other words, we investigate not only how power was exercised by the Nazi regime but also how ordinary Germans reacted to this. Course Syllabus

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University of Haifa
199 Aba Khoushy Ave.
Mount Carmel, Haifa
Israel 3498838
Tel: 972 (0)4 8240111



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