Albert Speer was a German architect during the period of the Nazi regime. After the events of the Second World War when the Nazi ministers were called to trial, Speer was one of the few ministers who did not receive the death penalty, and one of the fewer not imprisoned for life. In order to accomplish this, Speer had to create this image of himself being the “good Nazi” and an “apolitical technocrat”, titles which he attempted to uphold for the rest of his life. As evidence around Speer emerged over the years, different historians at different time periods had their own perspectives of him. Hugh Trevor-Roper was a traditionalist historian on Speer, with a view more skewed towards the “good Nazi”. Matthias Schmidt and Dan Van der Vat were revisionist historians on Speer, comparing and analysing fresher evidence of him to uncover the truth.
During the events of the Second World War, Albert Speer grew increasingly close to Adolf Hitler, the leader of the Nazi Regime. Due to this fact, he learnt about, and took part in many of the tasks which the Regime performed. When Germany lost the war, all of the Nazi ministers, including Speer were called to trial at Nuremberg. In order to avoid the death sentence Speer had to create an image of himself which was the “apolitical technocrat” and the “good Nazi”. Speer upheld this image throughout the rest of his life in order to keep a public image and conceal the truth. Speer wanted history to remember him as the Nazi minister who was oblivious to the politics and atrocities committed by the Regime. Speer accomplished this task through many methods. At the trial of Nuremburg, Speer made comments which stood out from the rest of the minister...
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...s knowledge of the ‘final solution’ and the extent of his intimacy with Hitler. Van der vat also doubted Speer’s intentions in joining the Nazi party, and claimed them to not be reaction to Hitler’s charisma, but well thought out and very deliberate.
Albert Speer sought out for history to remember him as the “good Nazi”, the “apolitical technocrat” and one who felt genuine remorse for that which was done by the Nazi regime. His techniques and methods held up for some time, convincing traditionalist historians such as Hugh Trevor-Roper, but as newer evidence emerged over time, revisionist historians who found out the truth began to see Speer in a new light. Matthias Schmidt and Dan van der Vat, both revisionist historians, inevitably viewed Speer as an intellectual, a liar, and a manipulator. In the end, Albert Speer’s efforts to skew history in favour of him, failed.
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