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Hitler: 1889-1936: Hubris (1998)

by Ian Kershaw

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Kershaw's Hitler (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,4672110,057 (4.29)26
From his illegitimate birth in a small Austrian village to his fiery death in a bunker under the Reich chancellery in Berlin, Adolf Hitler left a murky trail, strewn with contradictory tales and overgrown with self-created myths. One truth prevails: the sheer scale of the evils that he unleashed on the world has made him a demonic figure without equal in this century. Ian Kershaw's Hitler brings us closer than ever before to the character of the bizarre misfit in his thirty-year ascent from a Viennese shelter for the indigent to uncontested rule over the German nation that had tried and rejected democracy in the crippling aftermath of World War I. With extraordinary vividness, Kershaw recreates the settings that made Hitler's rise possible: the virulent anti-Semitism of prewar Vienna, the crucible of a war with immense casualties, the toxic nationalism that gripped Bavaria in the 1920s, the undermining of the Weimar Republic by extremists of the Right and the Left, the hysteria that accompanied Hitler's seizure of power in 1933 and then mounted in brutal attacks by his storm troopers on Jews and others condemned as enemies of the Aryan race. In an account drawing on many previously untapped sources, Hitler metamorphoses from an obscure fantasist, a "drummer" sounding an insistent beat of hatred in Munich beer halls, to the instigator of an infamous failed putsch and, ultimately, to the leadership of a ragtag alliance of right-wing parties fused into a movement that enthralled the German people.This volume, the first of two, ends with the promulgation of the infamous Nuremberg laws that pushed German Jews to the outer fringes of society, and with the march of the German army into the Rhineland, Hitler's initial move toward the abyss of war.… (more)
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» See also 26 mentions

English (15)  Dutch (2)  Spanish (1)  Italian (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (20)
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
Samenvatting:
Deze magistrale biografie is het beste standaardwerk over een van de hoofdrolspelers van de twintigste eeuw. Hoe kon een zo onbeduidende persoonlijkheid het Duitse volk zo volkomen in zijn greep krijgen? Ian Kershaw onderzoekt in dit eerste deel van zijn Hitlerbiografie Hitlers persoonlijke achtergronden en weet daarbij hardnekkige mythen te ontmaskeren. Hitler kreeg de macht door nationale en internationale tegenspelers in de schoot geworpen en de door de Eerste Wereldoorlog getraumatiseerde Duitse samenleving klampte zich aan Hitler vast als 'redder des vaderlands'.
Recensie(s):
De Britse historicus Ian Kershaw is een prominent onderzoeker van nazi-Duitsland. Het eerste deel van zijn magistrale Hitler-biografie loopt tot 1936. Kershaw behandelt hierin de jeugd van Hitler, diens zwerversjaren te Wenen, Hitler als soldaat in de Eerste Wereldoorlog, Hitler als propagandist van de jonge nazipartij, diens lange weg naar de macht, en diens eerste jaren als dictator van Duitsland. Kershaw laat goed uitkomen dat Hitlers triomfen niet alleen op eigen conto geschreven dienen te worden, maar ook tot stand kwamen door toevallige factoren en door het optreden van politici die hem onbewust in de kaart speelden. Ook laat hij zien dat het regime draaide zonder dat Hitler zich met details bemoeide. Kershaw kon beschikken over recent onthulde bronnen (zoals Goebbels' dagboeken) zodat een nog completer beeld ontstaat dan de klassieke biografieën van Bullock en van Fest reeds boden. Het boek kent een strenge opbouw en het munt uit door een zeer toegankelijk taalgebruik.
(Biblion recensie, Dr. J.L.G. van Oudheusden.)
  Langshan | Dec 11, 2019 |
Despite it’s bulky appearance this book is a very easy to read and factual story of how a man who later burned the world had risen to power. Everything you wanted to ask at history classes but you were afraid to ask. ( )
  TheCrow2 | Jul 9, 2018 |
Sir Ian Kershaw has written the definitive biography of Adolf Hitler. Lord Kershaw is a Fellow of the British Academy. He is considered one of the foremost authorities on the history of Germany. He has written several other books about WWII and Hitler, but this work is absolutely the most thorough of any books on Hitler.

This book is actually two volumes. The first volume, "Hitler: Hubris," covers Hitler's life from birth to 1936. The second volume, "Hitler: Nemesis," covers 1936 to 1945.

Together the volumes make up over 1500 pages. Lord Kershaw himself abridged the two volumes into one book for those who don't want to take on such a long book.

What is so remarkable about this work is that it is so well documented without surmising, guessing or otherwise interpreting events to suit the author's preferences -- which so often happens with famous and infamous people.

An example of how meticulous is the research:

Other books about Hitler's early life and his joining the Democratic Socialist Party make claims about his being an early member of the party with a membership number in the single digits.

This claim is apparently untrue. His membership "card" was numbered in the 500s. It wasn't until he became a sought-after public speaker and leader of anti-Bolshevik sentiments that his card was changed to reflect an earlier membership number.

Many books about Hitler are really about WWII. This book, of course, covers the war, but it is an actual well-articulated biography.

I confess that I would never have gotten through these two volumes but for the availability of them in audiobook format. While it is faster to read, it is -- at least for me -- easier to listen while sometimes doing other things.

If you really want to know about Adolf Hitler and how he came to be the infamous -- but apparently charismatic -- person he was, read these two volumes. They are well worth your time. ( )
  ClassicMovieFan | May 24, 2017 |
This is the first volume of a very readable biography of Hitler. Although the two books are very long, they are a good investment since there is so much information to cover. ( )
  M_Clark | Apr 10, 2016 |
History, but more gripping than any novel. Details Hitler's rise to power in the twenties. Leaves you staggered that this could appen in a modern society. Object lesson in the dangers of extreme political polarization. ( )
  steve.lane | Nov 28, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kershaw, IanAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Agricola, MargrietTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Álvarez Flórez, José ManuelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Boer, Margreet deTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dauzat, Pierre-EmmanuelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kochmann, KlausÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
'Charismatic rule has long beeb neglected and ridiculed, but apparently it has deep roots and becomes a powerful stimulus once the proper psychological and social conditions are set. The Leader's charismatic power is not a mere phantasm – none can doubt that millions believe in it.'
Franz Neumann, 1942
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Has this been Hitler's century?
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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From his illegitimate birth in a small Austrian village to his fiery death in a bunker under the Reich chancellery in Berlin, Adolf Hitler left a murky trail, strewn with contradictory tales and overgrown with self-created myths. One truth prevails: the sheer scale of the evils that he unleashed on the world has made him a demonic figure without equal in this century. Ian Kershaw's Hitler brings us closer than ever before to the character of the bizarre misfit in his thirty-year ascent from a Viennese shelter for the indigent to uncontested rule over the German nation that had tried and rejected democracy in the crippling aftermath of World War I. With extraordinary vividness, Kershaw recreates the settings that made Hitler's rise possible: the virulent anti-Semitism of prewar Vienna, the crucible of a war with immense casualties, the toxic nationalism that gripped Bavaria in the 1920s, the undermining of the Weimar Republic by extremists of the Right and the Left, the hysteria that accompanied Hitler's seizure of power in 1933 and then mounted in brutal attacks by his storm troopers on Jews and others condemned as enemies of the Aryan race. In an account drawing on many previously untapped sources, Hitler metamorphoses from an obscure fantasist, a "drummer" sounding an insistent beat of hatred in Munich beer halls, to the instigator of an infamous failed putsch and, ultimately, to the leadership of a ragtag alliance of right-wing parties fused into a movement that enthralled the German people.This volume, the first of two, ends with the promulgation of the infamous Nuremberg laws that pushed German Jews to the outer fringes of society, and with the march of the German army into the Rhineland, Hitler's initial move toward the abyss of war.

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W.W. Norton

2 editions of this book were published by W.W. Norton.

Editions: 0393320359, 0393046710

Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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