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Nazi terror : the Gestapo, Jews, and ordinary Germans / Eric A. Johnson.

By: Johnson, Eric A. (Eric Arthur), 1948-.
Material type: TextTextPublisher: New York : Basic Books, c1999Description: xx, 636 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.ISBN: 0465049060; 9780465049066.Subject(s): Germany. Geheime Staatspolizei | World War, 1939-1945 -- Atrocities | Atrocities -- Germany | Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945) -- GermanyAdditional physical formats: Online version:: Nazi terror.DDC classification: 943.086 | 940.53/18
Contents:
Locating Nazi terror: setting, interpretations, evidence -- Inside Gestapo headquarters: the agents of the terror -- The course of Jewish persecution in the prewar years -- A closer look: survivors' recollections and Jewish case files -- Destroying the Left -- The cross and the swastika: quieting religious opposition -- Nazi terror and "ordinary" Germans: 1933-1939 -- Nazi terror and "ordinary" Germans: the war years -- A summation: defendants, denouncers, and Nazi terror -- Persecution and deportation, 1939-1942 -- Murder one by one, 1943-1945 -- Mass murder, mass silence -- Christmas presents for the Gestapo.
Summary: "Central argument is this: the Nazis did not rule by terror and terror rarely touched the lives of most ordinary Germans. The terror apparatus at the dark heart of Nazi Germany, set in motion by the Nazi Party leadership in Berlin, employed a selective terror that concentrated almost exclusively on Jews and other specifically targeted enemies of the Nazi regime. It depended for its implementation and effectiveness, however, on the cooperation and often voluntary participation at the local level of the broad mass of ordinary German citizens who themselves suffered little or not at all from Nazi terror." -- Jacket.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
D804.G4 J55 1999 (Browse shelf) Available 0000001480144

Includes bibliographical references (p. [595]-619) and index.

Locating Nazi terror: setting, interpretations, evidence -- Inside Gestapo headquarters: the agents of the terror -- The course of Jewish persecution in the prewar years -- A closer look: survivors' recollections and Jewish case files -- Destroying the Left -- The cross and the swastika: quieting religious opposition -- Nazi terror and "ordinary" Germans: 1933-1939 -- Nazi terror and "ordinary" Germans: the war years -- A summation: defendants, denouncers, and Nazi terror -- Persecution and deportation, 1939-1942 -- Murder one by one, 1943-1945 -- Mass murder, mass silence -- Christmas presents for the Gestapo.

"Central argument is this: the Nazis did not rule by terror and terror rarely touched the lives of most ordinary Germans. The terror apparatus at the dark heart of Nazi Germany, set in motion by the Nazi Party leadership in Berlin, employed a selective terror that concentrated almost exclusively on Jews and other specifically targeted enemies of the Nazi regime. It depended for its implementation and effectiveness, however, on the cooperation and often voluntary participation at the local level of the broad mass of ordinary German citizens who themselves suffered little or not at all from Nazi terror." -- Jacket.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

In this scholarly book, Johnson (history, Central Michigan Univ.), who has previously written on crime and the administration of justice in modern Germany, strikes a balance between the early historiographical school, which focused on the totalitarian ruthlessness of the Gestapo, and the current school (i.e., Daniel Goldhagen), which lays blame more on "ordinary Germans" than on the Gestapo. Based on extensive research in the special court records and Gestapo case files for three representative German cities, as well as interviews with perpetrators, victims, and bystanders, the author shows that the reasons ordinary Germans joined the Gestapo were varied and multifaceted, not simply owing to "eliminationist anti-Semitism," as Goldhagen claimed in Hitler's Willing Executioners (LJ 3/15/96). An important and persuasive work, this is recommended for public and academic libraries.--John A. Drobnicki, York Coll., CUNY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

CHOICE Review

The Gestapo served as the leading instrument of terror in Hitler's police state, and its activities focused most on specifically identified groups, which included Jews, communists, socialists, homosexuals, Jehovah's Witnesses, Sinti and Roma, and outspoken critics of the regime. As for the vast majority of Germans, they had no contact with the Gestapo, provided the Gestapo with few tips, and felt little fear of ever being arrested. The German public's silent acquiescence to Nazi policy did not, however, preclude whispered criticisms of the regime or knowledge of the fate of these targeted groups. Although Johnson's conclusions are consistent with those reached by other leading scholars, his work offers a unique depth lacking in most studies. Specifically, Johnson's extensive research into the Gestapo merges records of postwar trials of former Gestapo officers with original documentation drawn from Gestapo case files, an array of contemporary surveys, and numerous personal interviews. Within the Krefeld and Cologne Gestapo offices, on which Johnson concentrates, Gestapo officers aggressively and brutally enforced the laws directed at specific groups. Despite available evidence, most Gestapo officers were never called to account for their crimes and usually lived out their lives in postwar West Germany on a full pension. All levels. D. A. Meier; Dickinson State University

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Eric A. Johnson is the author of Urbanization and Crime: Germany 1871-1914 and The Civilization of Crime: Violence in Town and Country Since the Middle Ages. A professor of history at Central Michigan University and a fellow of The Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study, he lives in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan.

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