The Effect of the 1936 Berlin Olympics on the Nazi's Persecution of the Jews and the Road to World War 2

The Effect of the 1936 Berlin Olympics on the Nazi's Persecution of the Jews and the Road to World War 2

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A. Plan of Investigation
This investigation assesses the effect of the 1936 Berlin Olympics on the Nazi’s persecution of the Jews and the road to World War II. Hitler used the 1936 Olympics as a major source of propaganda, and wanted to show the world that Germany was a successful country with a rising economy. This investigation will look at how he used the Games to further his cause and how successful he was in achieving these goals. Originally inspired by the book The Boys in the Boat, by Daniel Brown, this investigation will also use other books about the 1936 Olympics, such as The Nazi Olympics and Nazi Games, as well as scholarly journal articles.

B. Summary of Evidence
Berlin was chosen as the site of the 1936 Olympics in 1931, five years before the actual event, and two years before Adolf Hitler came to power (Bachrach 9). World War I had caused the 1916 Olympics in Berlin to be canceled (Bachrach 11), and Germany was not invited back to the Olympics after World War I until 1928 (Bachrach 12). Hitler and the Nazis started gaining power in the 1930s (Bachrach 16), with their ultimate goal to create one big German community composed of Germany and German-speaking people in surrounding countries, and conquer eastern countries to “gain more land for this united Germanic population…” (Bachrach 17). The Nazi’s persecution began with opponents of Hitler, who they arrested and put in prison or concentration camps (Bachrach 18). This persecution extended to other races as well, mainly Jews (“Hitler”). Hitler’s “purification” of the German race encompassed every part of the culture, including sports. Jews were excluded from participating on the German team, destroying many athlete’s careers (Streissguth 38). The United...


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Large, David Clay. Nazi Games: The Olympics of 1936. New York: W.W. Norton, 2007. Print.
"Leni Riefenstahl." Encyclopedia of World Biography. Detroit: Gale, 1998. N. pag. Student Resources in Context. Web. 30 Apr. 2014.
Mandell, Richard D. The Nazi Olympics. New York: Macmillan, 1971. Print.
Potts, Courtney. "1936: The 'Nazi Olympics': Adolf Hitler Tried to Turn the Berlin Games into a Showcase for 'Aryan Superiority.' but a Black American Track-and-field Star Spoiled His Party." New York Times Upfront 9 May 2011: 16. Student Resources in Context. Web. 6 Apr. 2014.
Streissguth, Thomas. Jesse Owens. Minneapolis: Lerner Publications, 1999. Print.
Walters, Guy. Berlin Games: How the Nazis Stole the Olympic Dream. New York: William Morrow, 2006. Print.

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