''They Thought They Were Free'': An Examination Book Review

''They Thought They Were Free'': An Examination
This paper explains how Milton Mayer's book "They Thought They were Free'' describes how and why the German people were seduced by Hitler's philosophies.
# 151964 | 1,168 words | 1 source | MLA | 2011 | US
Published on Oct 31, 2012 in English (Analysis) , History (European - 20th Century) , Holocaust Studies (General)

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This paper reviews Milton Mayer's book, "They Thought They were Free''. describing it as an important work that provides a better understanding of the motivations of the German people during the rise of the Nazis. This book, which is told through interviews with the people who lived during that time, helps to explain how and why the German people were seduced by Hitler and his philosophies and how they rationalized their support of Nazi tenets.

From the Paper:

''How could educated Germans, who were otherwise questioning and curious, not wonder what was taking place and stand up against the Nazis? This is a question asked not just by outsiders but also the intellectuals within German society. Of course, it is easier to understand history and human motivation by examining these subjects through the lens of hindsight. As change was gradually taking place around them, perhaps the intellectuals could not see the bigger picture of the reality around them. As one shares, looking back, "one must foresee the end in order to resist" (168). Because each person had their own life, job and responsibilities within their family and community, it was difficult to notice the bigger picture beyond their own smaller, specific place in the process. This was not to say that all German citizens happily followed the Nazi party line; in fact, many experienced doubt and uneasy feelings regarding what was gradually taking place.''

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Mayer, Milton. They Thought They Were Free: the Germans 1933-45. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1988. Print.

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