A Village in the Third Reich: How Ordinary Lives Were Transformed By the Rise of Fascism – from the author of Sunday Times bestseller Travellers in the Third Reich

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A Village in the Third Reich: How Ordinary Lives Were Transformed By the Rise of Fascism – from the author of Sunday Times bestseller Travellers in the Third Reich

A Village in the Third Reich: How Ordinary Lives Were Transformed By the Rise of Fascism – from the author of Sunday Times bestseller Travellers in the Third Reich

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Price: £12.5
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One of the most important things to point out to any wood-be reader, is that this is not so much a novel as a recount of life in a village in Germany before, during and after WW2. Even in wartime when villagers were listening to banned radio broadcasts from outside the Reich in the hopes of finding out what was really going on, it was to a Swiss station that they tuned. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or CERV. We get a detailed account of a small thriving village tucked away near the Alps and how its inhabitants were manipulated and adapted to a power beyond their control .

What are we to learn about the appeal and rise of Nazism by examining one small village in Bavaria, or Saxony, or anywhere for that matter, when it is a phenomenon repeated throughout Germany? Then we learn that this Oberstdorf “resistance” movement only became active in February 1945 as Germany was near its final collapse. Later, this attitude changed, but until the very end there were still Jews able to live in the village.Russia is now more isolated from the rest of the world than at any time since the Brezhnev era, and the Putin regime has become increasingly repressive and Margarita Simonyan’s propaganda machine increasingly strident and intense. The national NAZI leadership never, in fact, managed to turn even the opinion of some local NAZI officials completely against the strangers in their midst, never mind that of the general population. Of course the Third Reich is most infamous for its discrimination against the Jews, which ultimately led to mass murder and genocide on an industrial scale.

Maybe Oberstdorf was just like countless other German villages where self-interest and disinterest simply manifested itself in a willful moral blindness. This is a tale of conflicting loyalties and desires, of shattered dreams - but one in which, ultimately, human resilience triumphs.

Those who had joined because they thought something drastic simply had to be done about Germany’s core problems, were focused on doing that and either didn’t spare a lot of time for persecuting scapegoats, or even quietly sabotaged the persecution whenever a safe opportunity arose. The local newspaper, for example, does not even mention NSDAP until the 1932 election that led to Hitler becoming the chancellor. Set in Oberstdorf, a village in the Bavarian Alps known for simple living and winter sports, life was initially little changed by political events elsewhere.



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