National Socialism was a political movement that emerged in Germany after its defeat in World War I. This movement is more commonly known as Nazism. The National Socialist Party or Nazi Party was formed in Munich is 1919. Adolph Hitler was given all dictatorial powers as the result of the Enabling Act. By 1933 the party had gained control over the entire German state and the ideas, propaganda, and doctrines of National Socialism were written in Hitler's Mein Kampf (My Struggle) . Hitler believed that, "The Nordic master race was created to rule over inferior races, especially the Jews" (McManus 5). This was just the beginning of Nazi thought that swept throughout Germany until the end of World War II. Party membership was "voluntary" and millions joined, some willingly and others against their will. National Socialism transformed Germany from a weak republic to a powerful state. This change was brought about by one individual, Adolph Hitler. Hitler had tremendous influence over millions in the German community. National Socialism greatly influenced the church and education in the Third Reich. Today the Nazi influence is seen in white nationalist groups all over the world.
It was essential for churches in the Third Reich to understand what was happening politically in Germany. Hitler subordinated church policy to his political policies. Tensions were high in the German Bishops' Conference between the president Archbishop Bertram and Bishop Preysing. Preysing saw that the Third Reich was corrupt as early as 1933. The Vatican and most of the German Bishops agreed with the ideas of National Socialism. Bertram defended the government until his death in 1945. Preysing...
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...race is superior to all others.
Hitler impacted both the church and education in Germany. The effects of the Nazi party are still felt today. The power of an individual should never be underestimated. In Hitler's case, it is apparent that one individual can influence millions lives and completely change the course of history.
- Blackburn, Gilmer. Education in the Third Reich. Albany: New York Press, 1985.
- Constable, George. The Twisted Dream. Virginia: TIME-LIFE, 1990.
- Gay, Kathlyn. Neo-Nazis: A Growing Threat. New Jersey: Enslow, 1997
- Hockenas, Paul. Free to Hate. London: Routledge, 1993.
- McManus, Jason. The New Order. Virginia: TIME-LIFE, 1989.
- Scholder, Klaus. A Requiem for Hitler. Philadelphia: Trinity, 1989.
- Speer, Albert. Inside the Third Reich. New York: Macmillan, 1969.
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