In this riveting book, Michael Burleigh sets Nazi Germany in a European context, showing how the Third Reich's abandonment of liberal democracy, decency and tolerance was widespread in the Europe of the period.
He shows how a radical, pseudo-religious movement, led by an oddity with dazzling demagogic talents, seemed to offer salvation to a German exhausted by war, depression and galloping inflation. 'This is a monumental book.' Richard Overy, Sunday Telegraph 'If I had to recommend one book on the Third Reich, this would be it.' Daniel Johnson, Daily Telegraph 'It is a breathtaking achievement, at once broader and deeper than any other single volume ever published on the subject.
Indeed I would go further: it is the product of authentic historical genius.' Niall Ferguson, Sunday Times 'Happily, Michael Burleigh now fills that bibliographical gap, with a readable and highly knowledgeable account of that ghastly period.
You will never be bored by this extraordinary book.' Andrew Roberts, Mail on Sunday
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 992 pages, illustrations
- Publisher: Pan Macmillan
- Publication Date: 06/07/2001
- Category: European history
- ISBN: 9780330487573
- EPUB from £9.59
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Review by xuebi
Burleigh writes an epic, sweeping history of the rise of Nazism in Germany, the Second World War, and its immediate aftermath. Though there are many books about Hitler and the War, Burleigh manages to write a new book covering Nazism as political religion and Nazi totalitarianism including eugenics, mass murder etc. He offers a chillingly comprehensive account of the programme of mass sterilisation against Gypsies, Jews, and the mentally ill. Burleigh is very good at describing this progressively deteriorating position of the "undesirables" and it makes for uncomfortable reading. Though the author's underlying premise means he must often make comparisons to Stalinist Russia, these are few and brief. Nevertheless, the chapters on the pieces that together made up the jigsaw of the Holocaust are valuable and haunting. Overall, the book is indeed emotionally draining as the reader is forced to confront time and again "man's inhumanity to man" but nevertheless, the reader should persevere for it is a rewarding historical study.