The Nazi Conscience

By Claudia Koonz,

Book cover of The Nazi Conscience

Book description

The Nazi conscience is not an oxymoron. In fact, the perpetrators of genocide had a powerful sense of right and wrong, based on civic values that exalted the moral righteousness of the ethnic community and denounced outsiders.

Claudia Koonz's latest work reveals how racial popularizers developed the infrastructure and rationale…

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Why read it?

2 authors picked The Nazi Conscience as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

One of the most difficult facets of Nazism for my college students to grasp is that the Nazis had a sense of ethics and morals. It’s easy to look at the horrors of Nazism, rightfully condemn the Nazis as monstrous, and congratulate ourselves on having the moral and ethical fiber that would never allow us to engage in such atrocities. The thing is, though, that so much of the evil committed in this world is committed by people who think they are doing what’s right. Koonz’s examination of Nazi morals is an uncomfortable read but a necessary one. It forced…

From Richard's list on the Holocaust and how humanity failed.

Nazism is typically understood as pure evil, and the title of this book may therefore strike you as an oxymoron. But historian Claudia Koonz takes readers by the hand and leads them to understand that National Socialism was a highly moralistic movement that was dedicated to the ideal of ridding the world of evil and depravity, as embodied by the so-called inferior races, especially the Jewish race. This book is extraordinarily significant both as a study of the past—how Nazi racial ideology came to capture the hearts and minds of a large swathe of the German public—and as a warning…

From David's list on inhumanity.

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