Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Because there's nothing else to talk about....Richard Evans' "The Coming of the Third Reich" leaves much to be desired

My problem with the book is that he commits the error that any academic would be canned for: in the face of examining just why people believed in the ideology of National Socialism he just throws up his hands and says that's it was just a mishmash of stuff. There's no reason why Nazism was popular as opposed to other right wing ideas, it was just an amalgamation of the most extreme elements and was popular. And there was a depression. Real historians would never settle for the answer "It just happened". Nothing 'just happens'. Yes, there was a depression, but the reasons why Nazism as an ideology was popular are subtle and takes us into an area of background that would cause undue complexity for the book.

Here's to things just happening! I guess that people who can't remember the past will be condemned to repeat it. And that Richard Evans' book will continue to be popular because on a fundamental level it doesn't make people think critically about the issues,

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