Private Life and Privacy in Nazi Germany

Private Life and Privacy in Nazi Germany


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Was it possible to have a private life under the Nazi dictatorship? It has often been assumed that private life and the notion of privacy had no place under Nazi rule. Meanwhile, in recent years historians of Nazism have been emphasising the degree to which Germans enthusiastically embraced notions of community. This volume sheds fresh light on these issues by focusing on the different ways in which non-Jewish Germans sought to uphold their privacy. It highlights the degree to which the regime permitted or even fostered such aspirations, and it offers some surprising conclusions about how private roles and private self-expression could be served by, and in turn serve, an alignment with the community. Furthermore, contributions on occupied Poland offer insights into the efforts by 'ethnic Germans' to defend their aspirations to privacy and by Jews to salvage the remnants of private life in the ghetto.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781108719032
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 06/18/2020
Pages: 410
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.84(d)

About the Author

Elizabeth Harvey is Professor of History at the University of Nottingham. She has published extensively on Weimar and Nazi Germany, particularly on gender history, the history of youth and the history of photography. She is the author of Women and the Nazi East: Agents and Witnesses of Germanization (2003) and is currently working on the history of gender and forced labour in occupied Poland.

Johannes Hürter is Head of the Research Department Munich at the Institut für Zeitgeschichte, Munich and Adjunct Professor of Modern History at the Leibniz Institute for Contemporary History Munich-Berlin. He is a leading expert on the political and military history of Weimar Germany and the Third Reich. His works include Hitlers Heerführer: Die deutschen Oberbefehlshaber im Krieg gegen die Sowjetunion 1941/42 (2006) and Hitler: New Research (edited with Elizabeth Harvey, 2018).

Maiken Umbach is Professor of Modern History at the University of Nottingham. She is co-director of Nottingham's Centre for the Study of Political Ideologies, and Principal Investigator of the AHRC-funded project 'Photography as Political Practice in National Socialism'. She has published extensively on the relationship between subjectivity, identity politics, and ideology in modern European history. Her works include Authenticity: The Cultural History of a Political Concept (2018) and Photography, Migration and Identity: A German-Jewish-American Story (2018).

Andreas Wirsching is Director of the Institut für Zeitgeschichte, Munich and Professor of History at the Leibniz Institute for Contemporary History Munich-Berlin. He has published extensively on European political history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and the history of the European Union. His most recent works include Hüter der Ordnung: Die Innenministerien in Bonn und Ost-Berlin nach dem Nationalsozialismus (edited with Frank Bösch, 2018).

Table of Contents

Part I. Interpreting the Private under National Socialism: New Approaches: 1. Introduction: reconsidering private life under the Nazi dictatorship Elizabeth Harvey, Johannes Hürter, Maiken Umbach and Andreas Wirsching; 2. A particular kind of privacy: accessing 'the private' in national socialism Janosch Steuwer; 3. Private lives, public faces: on the social self in Nazi Germany Mary Fulbrook; 4. Private and public moral sentiments in Nazi Germany Nicholas Stargardt; 5. (Re-)inventing the private under national socialism Maiken Umbach; Part II. The Private in the Volksgemeinschaft: 6. Private life in the people's economy: spending and saving in Nazi Germany Pamela E. Swett; 7. 'Hoist the flag!': flags as a sign of political consensus and distance in the Nazi period Karl Christian Führer; 8. The vulnerable dwelling: local privacy before the courts Annemone Christians; 9. Walther von Hollander as an advice columnist on marriage and the family in the Third Reich Lu Seegers; Part III. The Private at War: 10. Personal relationships between harmony and alienation: aspects of home leave during the Second World War Christian Packheiser; 11. Working on the relationship: exchanging letters, goods, and photographs in wartime Andrew Stuart Bergerson, Laura Fahnenbruck and Christine Hartig; 12. Love letters from front and home: a private space for intimacy Cornelie Usborne; 13. 'A birth is nothing out of the ordinary here …': mothers, midwives and the private sphere in the 'Reichsgau Wartheland' 1939–1945 Wiebke Lisner; 14. Transformations of the 'private': proximity and distance in the spatial confinement of the ghettos in occupied Poland 1939–1942 Carlos A. Haas.

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