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The 12-Year Reich: A Social History of Nazi Germany 1933-1945

The 12-Year Reich: A Social History of Nazi Germany 1933-1945

1971 The 12-Year Reich: A Social History of Nazi Germany 1933-1945 by Richard Grunberger. LOC 69-16189, ISBN 03-076435-1. Jacket Design by Bob Korn.

From the Book Jacket

The Nazis, to enforce their grip on every citizen’s allegiance, developed a social system unprecedented in history. It was rigidly hierarchical, with the seemingly beneficent and ascetic figure of Hitler at the top—the focus for the homage and aspirations of every German man, woman, and child. How did the “ordinary citizen” live under such a system? This book is filled with the facts, the data, and the details.

If you had lived in Hitler's Germany, you would have gone to certain movies (ponderous costume dramas), told topical jokes, and used a special jargon: “Hitler butter” for margarine or the “Hitler cut” for the unkindest cut of all—sterilization.

If you were a woman, child-bearing would have been your goal; if you had four children, you would have received the Honor Cross on Hitler’s mother’s birthday; if your child’s father was an SS man, all maternity expenses would have been paid by the state. However, “mixed intercourse” was against the law.

Richard Grunberger covers such diverse subjects as education, business, sports, the arts, beauty (no make-up, no dieting), family life in a society where fathers could inform on sons, children on parents, and even the fantasies of average Germans—children who dreamed of becoming Gauleiters in the Congo, women who believed that no wall in their homes would be hit by a bomb if Hitler’s picture were hung on it. He describes the Hitler Youth (“we are born to die for Germany”), the medieval ritual injected into every phase of life, and how employers and employees, wage earners and housewives, farm workers and city dwellers reacted to Nazi ideology.

The 12-Year Reich is the first comprehensive one-volume social history of Nazi Germany showing how Germans lived, worked, relaxed, and regarded themselves and others between 1933 and 1945.

Based on original sources, contemporary newspapers, magazines and books, letters, and many previously unpublished accounts, it provides one of the most devastating portraits ever drawn of a human society.

About the Author

Born in Vienna, Richard Grunberger grew up in England and graduated from King’s College, London, in 1952. He is a contributor to many scholarly and historical journals; his first book, Germany 1918-1945, was published in 1964.

Publisher's Note

The 12-year Reich, the first comprehensive social study of the Third Reich, shows what the Nazi regime proffered as the 'ideal' society and how the German people responded. Along with the violence, corruption, persecution, public extravaganzas, the ever-present Party, and the cult of the Fuhrer, a ghastly irritation of ordinary life went on.

Book Description

This book is the first comprehensive social study of Nazi Germany. With devastating documentation it shows what the Nazi regime proffered as the 'ideal' society and how the Germany people responded. Divided into chapters as Business, Youth, The Workers, Ritual and Fuhrer Worship, and using examples that range from the horrifying to the ridiculous, Grunberger charts the way Nazi propaganda permeated the everyday lives of German citizens and allowed the Nazis to plunder the nation's institutions and initiated the Holocaust without any significant resistance.

Library of Congress Catalog Listing

  • LC Control No.: 69016189
  • Type of Material: Book (Print, Microform, Electronic, etc.)
  • Personal Name: Grunberger, Richard.
  • Main Title: The 12-year Reich; a social history of Nazi Germany, 1933-1945.
  • Edition Information: [1st ed.]
  • Published/Created: New York, Holt, Rinehart and Winston [1971]
  • Description: vi, 535 p. illus., ports. 24 cm.
  • ISBN: 0030764351
  • Notes: London ed. (Weidenfeld and Nicolson) has title: A social history of the Third Reich.
  • Bibliography: p. 473.
  • Subjects:
    • Germany --Politics and government --1933-1945.
    • Germany --Social conditions --1933-1945.
    • Germany --Intellectual life --20th century.
  • LC Classification: DD256.5 .G78 1971b
  • Dewey Class No.: 914.3/03/86
  • Geographic Area Code: e-gx---
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