The German Family (Routledge Revivals): Essays on the Social History of the Family in Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Germany

Routledge
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This book surveys the history of the German family in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The contributions deal with the influence of industrialisation on family life in town and country, with rural families and communities under the impact of social and economic change, and with the role and influence of the family in the lives of men and women in the newly-emerged working class.

Research on the history of the family had so far, at the point of this book’s publication in 1981, concentrated on England and France; this book adds an important comparative dimension by extending the discussion into Central Europe and bringing fresh evidence and interpretation to bear on the wider debate about the effects of industrialisation on family structure and family life as a whole. The authors approach the subject from a variety of perspectives, including social anthropology, oral history, economic history and feminist studies.

This book is ideal for students of history, particularly the history of Germany.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Routledge
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Published on
Jun 11, 2015
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Pages
302
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ISBN
9781317550235
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Best For
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Europe / Germany
History / General
History / Social History
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Christopher R. Browning’s shocking account of how a unit of average middle-aged Germans became the cold-blooded murderers of tens of thousands of Jews—now with a new afterword and additional photographs.

Ordinary Men is the true story of Reserve Police Battalion 101 of the German Order Police, which was responsible for mass shootings as well as round-ups of Jewish people for deportation to Nazi death camps in Poland in 1942. Browning argues that most of the men of RPB 101 were not fanatical Nazis but, rather, ordinary middle-aged, working-class men who committed these atrocities out of a mixture of motives, including the group dynamics of conformity, deference to authority, role adaptation, and the altering of  moral norms to justify their actions. Very quickly three groups emerged within the battalion: a core of eager killers, a plurality who carried out their duties reliably but without initiative, and a small minority who evaded participation in the acts of killing without diminishing the murderous efficiency of the battalion whatsoever.

While this book discusses a specific Reserve Unit during WWII, the general argument Browning makes is that most people succumb to the pressures of a group setting and commit actions they would never do of their own volition.  

Ordinary Men is a powerful, chilling, and important work with themes and arguments that continue to resonate today.

“A remarkable—and singularly chilling—glimpse of human behavior...This meticulously researched book...represents a major contribution to the literature of the Holocaust."—Newsweek

 


 

An Economist Best Book of the Year

“Sweeping . . . an ambitious synthesis . . . [Evans] writes with admirable narrative power and possesses a wonderful eye for local color . . . Fascinating.”—Stephen Schuker, The Wall Street Journal

From the bestselling author of The Third Reich at War, a masterly account of Europe in the age of its global hegemony; the latest volume in the Penguin History of Europe series

Richard J. Evans, bestselling historian of Nazi Germany, returns with a monumental new addition to the acclaimed Penguin History of Europe series, covering the period from the fall of Napoleon to the outbreak of World War I. Evans’s gripping narrative ranges across a century of social and national conflicts, from the revolutions of 1830 and 1848 to the unification of both Germany and Italy, from the Russo-Turkish wars to the Balkan upheavals that brought this era of relative peace and growing prosperity to an end. Among the great themes it discusses are the decline of religious belief and the rise of secular science and medicine, the journey of art, music, and literature from Romanticism to Modernism, the replacement of old-regime punishments by the modern prison, the end of aristocratic domination and the emergence of industrial society, and the dramatic struggle of feminists for women’s equality and emancipation. Uniting the era’s broad-ranging transformations was the pursuit of power in all segments of life, from the banker striving for economic power to the serf seeking to escape the power of his landlord, from the engineer asserting society’s power over the environment to the psychiatrist attempting to exert science’s power over human nature itself.
      The first single-volume history of the century, this comprehensive and sweeping account gives the reader a magnificently human picture of Europe in the age when it dominated the rest of the globe.
In the seventy years since the demise of the Third Reich, there has been a significant transformation in the ways in which the modern world understands Nazism. In this brilliant and eye-opening collection, Richard J. Evans, the acclaimed author of the Third Reich trilogy, offers a critical commentary on that transformation, exploring how major changes in perspective have informed research and writing on the Third Reich in recent years. Drawing on his most notable writings from the last two decades, Evans reveals the shifting perspectives on Nazism's rise to political power, its economic intricacies, and its subterranean extension into postwar Germany. Evans considers how the Third Reich is increasingly viewed in a broader international context, as part of the age of imperialism; discusses the growing emphasis on the larger economic and cultural circumstances of the era; and emphasizes the development of research into Nazi society, particularly in the understanding of Nazi Germany as a political system based on popular approval and consent. Exploring the complex relationship between memory and history, Evans also points out the places where the growing need to confront the misdeeds of Nazism and expose the complicity of those who participated has led to crude and sweeping condemnation, when instead historians should be making careful distinctions. Written with Evans' sharp-eyed insight and characteristically compelling style, these essays offer a summation of the collective cultural memory of Nazism in the present, and suggest the degree to which memory must be subjected to the close scrutiny of history.
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