posts 16 - 28 of 28
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 21

Adolf Was Normal

I think that it is important for students to learn about the more mundane aspects of Adolf Hitler and his life because those minuscule details can be a lesson in themselves. I definitely agree with some of the points @purplenailpolish00 and @yelloworchids made. Those who are studying the Holocaust need not spend too much time on Hitler, as it would detract from the survivors' stories, but understanding him to some degree is key. The fact that Hitler cared for his body, maintained a spectacular home, and was kind to his young neighbors should be no surprise. Oftentimes as human beings we think we're judging someone based on their character, but we are still making conclusions based on appearances. Appearances aren't limited to mere looks, but are also the positive things we attribute to one's personhood.

For example, a thief could live right next door to any one of us without us knowing. They could keep a stringent wake-up routine, garden the flowers, and say hello every time we pass by. These positive qualities would cause many of us to say, ''Wow, what a pleasant, diligent, and caring individual! Maybe I should invite them over for dinner sometime.'' Let's say we did invite them over to eat, and they kept a lively conversation. This would make it even harder for us to think of them as evil, cunning, or even suspect in any way.

It's difficult for human beings to closely associate with negative traits. This is why many of us need a ''sandwich'' model when we receive negative feedback in order to save our egos. Consciously or subconsciously, we see our neighborhoods as indirect mirrors of our own lives and personalities. ''If so-and-so is bad, then I can be malicious as well.'' We don't want to see ourselves as bad, and in extension, our neighbors as suspect. We also strive to not come off as judge-y, even in our own minds, so even if a person hinted at theft with their actions we'd quickly dismiss it.

People are fascinated by Hitler's life because deep down they're wondering, ''could he have been my neighbor?'' ''Would I have caught him veering off and said something?'' They want to know if their moral compass would've been strong enough to stop him. The bottom line is yes, Hitler could've been your neighbor, and maybe you would've been strong enough to stop him. However, it's quite likely you wouldn't have been able to since what you would've been seeing was an eccentric, sophisticated man who raised the community's property values. 9/10 it's microcosm over macrocosm for people. People should know that Hitler was a rabid racist who fueled fear, and also loved casual strolls on the beach.

Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 23

Humanizing Hitler

I think why many people are so interested in Hitler is because they can’t fathom how such a person could do such horrible things and still be human. I feel like for many people including myself, we find it hard to imagine that such a cruel person could exist - it just seems so unreal. Flanner’s article first discussed Hitler’s interests, in things like historical films, and strange personality traits, such as being completely opposite from what Germany is known for (like being vegetarian, an abstainer in sex, smoking, and beer, and other things while the country is known for sausages, sex, beer, and cigars). Then the article delves into Hitler’s somewhat troubling childhood, with him being quite a social outcast, his father, and the rejections, to his career and his rise to power. The “Homes & Gardens” article talked about Hitler’s home lifestyle (how he liked decorating his house, how he got along with his servants, his paintings, his dogs, and etc.). The interview with Ian Kershaw gave some insight into Hitler’s rise to power and his personality, specifically his strength in oratorical power.

I think that the “Hitler’s Mountain Home” article was most similar to the celebrity-infused talk/ gossip shows because it gives us a view into Hitler’s daily life, even detailing the time he goes to talk to the gardeners and such. I feel like these kinds of articles humanize Hitler, which is important in the sense that we know that he, too, is human not some monster.

I personally found the “Profiles: Fuhrer” and “Interview with Ian Kershaw” much more interesting and informative than “Hitler’s Mountain Home.” The first two articles discussed aspects of Hitler’s life that contributed to his actions during his rise in power (like the art school rejections making him appoint himself and the Holocaust. I think that it was important that Kershaw clarified that Hitler was not mentally compromised in his actions, because blaming people’s actions on their mental healths take away their responsibility (which is similar to many things we see in the United States; most recently we see that the police justified the Atlanta spa shooter murdering eight women on his sex addiction). I also found it interesting how Hitler’s oratory skills played a lot into his manipulation of the people (like in the Kershaw interview where he claimed to not have an opinion in the persecution of Jewish people when he had stated he wanted the removal of Jews early in his career and even so the persecution of Jews continued on such a widespread scale because of the anti-Semitic propaganda and rhetoric that were pushed).

I think that although at times the “Hitler’s Mountain Home” article went into more detail than necessary about Hitler’s artistic and home life, the three articles overall gave useful insight on Hitler in the sense that Hitler was not some demon that killed millions of people, but some sane person who committed horrible atrocities. The articles show that a person can have seemingly normal hobbies, interests, and be completely sane and still do awful things. Granted, no matter how much we learn about people like Hitler, we would never fully know what goes on in their minds. It is important to understand that anyone from any kind of background can commit horrendous crimes, but I don’t think it's that important to learn every aspect of those people’s lives (especially irrelevant things such as their favorite foods or something like that) unless it may correlate or lead to another important aspect in their career or their actions while in power like what @sizzles said about how spending too much time on them may take away or blur the stories of the survivors.

Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 29

The Problem with Humanizing Hitler

Reading these articles honestly set me back because the humanization of Hitler is something we are not used to. He’s typically described as evil personified but as @fidgit said in their post “By calling him a monster, Satan, evil, we are denying what he truly was, a human man”. Also arguments that he was insane, as Ian Kershow wrote, “[are] just an apology for him... He’s not in charge of his actions, not responsible for his deeds.”

There is a fundamental difference between fascination with Hitler, and learning about his “humanizing” qualities in order to understand that he was a human being who committed atrocities. I don’t necessarily think that The New Yorker profile did this the best because, the way the article was written minimized some of his hateful opinions by placing them directly next to a sentence describing his sad moods. An example of this is:

“His moods change often, his opinions never. Since the age of twenty they have been mainly anti-Semitic, anti-communist, anti-suffrage, and Pan-German. He has a fine library of six thousand volumes, yet he never reads; books would do him a little good -- his mind is made up... His disordered nervous system gives his psychic superiority over the healthy and the plodding. At such moments the Fuhrer, with tears on his cheeks but life and death in his hands, is too serious to be trifled with”

Within the same paragraph the writer describes his anti-semtic opinions, and then humanizes him in the next sentence by talking about him crying due to a disordered nervous system. Though the latter fact may be helpful if you care to learn background information on Hilter, the presence of these two facts in the same sentence in some ways minimizes his hateful opinions, they’re almost placed on the backburner.

At the end of the day, the most important thing to remember about Hitler was that he was a human-being so driven by his hate, that he committed one of the biggest atrocities in human history. Any small fact about his likes, dislikes, or childhood is essentially insignificant, they only can serve to help people understand he was a human. We can learn all we want about how he was a vegetarian, or how he liked to decorate his mountain-top home but focusing on that information is an injustice to the people who were not seen as human by Hitler himself. If he couldn’t see the value of human life or regular human activities, why should we spend the time of day trying to seek to humanize him. I think this is a huge problem that we see often with people who commit extremist acts or hold such beliefs. If there is an alt-right leader or racist figure, people will seek to humanize them or find something to blame their beliefs on, rather than just understand that a human can commit/support atrocities just out of their free-will. (similar to a point @greenbeans said). There shouldn't be a platform set up, that could potentially lead to people blaming extremist actions on some insignificant fact about a person’s past. People have engaged in coversations along the lines of if “hitler had just gotten into art school..” and then go into a spiel that maybe the Holocaust would’t have occured. There will always be ifs and maybes but they shouldn’t be centered in our understanding of learning about history, nor when we learn about Hitler. Though I learned some information about Hitler, it didn't add much to my understanding of him because his "human qualities" were so isolated from the genocidal actions he committed.

Boston , MA, US
Posts: 22

Why are we so intrigued by Hitler?

I believe people are so intrigued by Hitler because he did horrible things, which many cannot imagine even thinking of doing, and so they want to know why he was able to consciously do them. People want to know why and how he got to believe so strongly in his beliefs that led him to committing such atrocities. People want to know how he as a person had the conscience, or rather, lacked the conscience, that he was able to commit these acts. I would say that such fascination with Hitler is not akin to people’s fascination with figures like Beyonce or Kim Kardashian or even Donald Trump. Fascination with celebrities like the first two, may be because people admire them, look up to them, and aspire to be like them, or because they are interesting public figures whose actions are paid attention to. But a fascination with Hitler is different. It’s different because of what he did to millions of people, killed, tortured, imprisoned. People are fascinated by the fact that a human could do that to another human, let alone millions of other humans. Not that he did everything directly, physically, himself, but he was the mastermind. Hitler now is not a celebrity in today’s sense of the word, but more of a figure of evil and of violence and of hate. I don’t think people are actually fascinated with “the image of pure evil”. I myself wouldn’t say I was fascinated with Hitler. I wouldn’t say I was fascinated by Donald Trump either. Listening to Trump makes me feel disgusted, not fascinated.

The style of these articles are sort of like those of modern day celebrity profiles or like today’s Architectural Digest. But they have a much more sinister meaning because gossip shows are about relatively insignificant, often trivial things, topics that don’t necessarily have a large impact on the world. But this was Hitler, who was at the time the ruler of Germany, and later the mastermind of the Holocaust. So in that way they are unlike talk/gossip shows because they were documenting a man who had a very significant impact on the world.

Hitler is definitely not responsible for every evil thing that happened in World War II, for example the war crimes committed by Japan, or the US bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But he was responsible for many atrocities and evil things that happened during the war. In the interview, Kershaw says “Take the notion that the Jews should be removed. In his very first political statement in 1919 he says this should be the aim of any national government. But when he comes to power, he doesn’t instigate a set of policies to lead to that objective. Rather, he stands for it, and others seek to implement it in myriad different ways. In so doing, they push along the dynamic of radicalization and anti-Semitism without Hitler having to do very much except at crucial moments, like the Nuremberg Laws of 1935 or the pogroms of 1938.” I thought this was interesting, that Hitler may have been responsible for pushing the ideas behind many actions, but may not have come up with some of the policies himself. But that also doesn’t mean he isn’t responsible for those too, since his ideas were the source.

I would say that my “big takeaway” is that he was an extremely confusing person. I don’t really understand him any better. One paragraph in particular from Janet Flanner’s profiles, was really very confusing: “He believes in intolerance as a pragmatic principle. He accepts violence as a detail of state, he says mercy is not his affair with men, yet he is kind to dumb animals. He becomes sick if he sees blood, yet he is unafraid of being killed or killing.” And he was a vegetarian, which is puzzling, and didn’t smoke or drink alcohol, and he gave “fun fairs” for local children like it mentioned in the Homes and Gardens article. These things complicate his image. I agree with Kershaw, that pinning everything on a mental illness would be too easy of a way of excusing his horrible actions. I guess it is worthwhile to try and understand how someone could form such ideas so that others could be prevented from becoming like him, but I think we shouldn’t get stuck on trying to understand him specifically and elevating it above other things because nothing excuses what he did. I think @greenflowers58 said it perfectly: “I think in a way these articles relate to today’s celebrity gossip/lifestyle talks because it shows someone who is distant from you or has a life you could never even imagine, whether that's in a good or bad way, in a more personal and humanizing view. In my opinion it is important to remember that he is a person and to not boil Hitler down to an [purely] evil being because then you almost lose the fact that he made conscious decisions to carry out the deaths of millions of innocent people and that it is within human nature to do so.” This last sentence is particularly important and scary, and it relates to the question many people may have of how a human can do such things to other humans. At the end of the day, the most important thing to know about Adolf Hitler is what he did during the Holocaust, and the deaths, destruction, and desolation he caused.

Posts: 21

The big thing I learned from the readings is the fact that Hitler was human, just like everyone else. He owned many things like other people. He was nice to the people around him. He had physical problems like many people. He went through troubles. He did normal things. He was normal. This is why my understanding of Hitler got worse. For someone who seemed like a normal guy to be the mastermind of a genocide that killed millions, it doesn’t make sense. I do think trying to understand Hitler is worthwhile. I think the main thing anyone has to understand about Hitler is the fact that he was a killer. Not only was he a killer, he commited genocide that killed over six million people. The fact that these readings introduce the human aspect of Hitler can also help with that understanding as it shows how he knew what he was doing during WWII.

Therefore, I agree with what @Earl Grey Tea said when they were talking about how calling Hitler a madman is incorrect as it makes him seem less responsible. By calling Hitler a madman, it makes it seem like Hitler wasn’t fully in control of himself. It makes it seem like he was conscious of his decisions. By showing the fairly normal life he lived, it shows people how Hitler is fully responsible for his own actions as he isn’t different from any other human.

Boston, Massachusettes, US
Posts: 20

Humanizing Hitler

When understanding what makes Adolf Hitler so interesting, two subjects come to mind. One, to find out what made him tick, what made him different from everyone else, and what made him choose to commit himself to such horrifying actions. The second, however, is just as interesting. What made him like us? These two lenses serve to both distance and humanize Hitler, but the main reason we would want to do either is juts because Hitler is an interesting human being. When someone commits themselves to accomplishing a goal like the holocaust and actually succeeds, it is easy to become fascinated with how they work. While similar, it is a different type of fascination to today's celebrities. While today's celebrities will receive admiration from their fan and support (not from everyone) when they accomplish something, which is similar to how Hitler was treated during his life and shortly after, today, there is no sense of admiration, but the sense of fascination is still there. While for many people, it may be a fascination with the idea of pure evil, a more analytical approach is one that looks at his similarities and differences to a "normal" person. The sheer abnormality of his public actions is, of course, one way to look at Hitler, however, humanizing Hitler, and looking at him from human standards and point of view, is just as interesting. He is treated as the ultimate symbol of evil in our generation, which is why it is important to see all aspects of his life. To know, what made him tick, what was he like, was he insane or not, etc. Making sure history doesn't repeat itself is to understand the signs of when someone takes the same actions as Hitler, to not look at Hitler as some otherworldly evil that we cannot comprehend, but an attainable evil, one that must be avoided at all costs.

Boston , MA, US
Posts: 29

Can someone be born pure evil?

Adolf Hitler, the perfect enemy. We are so intrigued by him because of the mystery that shrouds his story; we see him as a monster. When we think of all the atrocities behind which he stands, it’s incomprehensible to us that he is a human just like you and I. In many ways from our 21st century POV, Hitler is the ultimate bogeyman. He’s some far-off being that radiates evil. The reality is that he is a human, not a monster, and we know this, but for some reason, we can’t understand how. This is the root of our fascination. We need to start viewing him as human however because monsters are evil by nature and humans are evil through learned experiences. Classifying Hitler as a monster in many ways undermines the role of his own personal desires and those of society in the Holocaust.

I feel that a big reason behind the interest in Hitler is to understand how he could have risen to power and committed so many atrocities without someone stopping him or realizing what he was planning. We wonder what caused him to be so evil, how human was he really, or if, even, we could have the capabilities to commit the crimes he did, had we grown up under different circumstances. We wonder how someone could be so evil without anyone stopping him. I remember learning in another class that he read a lot of books with racist ideologies and after the war, he lived in a very chaotic Weimar Republic in which he saw a lot of uncertainty and turmoil, and he thought he needed to fix it with all the things he had learned. It’s important to know that he was a narcissist that wanted power, and people were manipulated by him. I know that a lot of people wonder if he was truly born evil. An article I read in ELA class, plays with the idea of would you kill baby Hitler and what would that mean for the world? After learning about his upbringing you can’t help but think maybe in different circumstances, he would’ve been different. People being so intrigued by Hitler shows that people will always try to understand something and try to find a reason.

Janet Flanner’s “Profiles: Führer,” was detailed and analytical. It described his everyday habits and general background and was very straightforward. Although biographies can be too humanizing at times, Flanner did a good job of sticking to the facts I think that Flanner writes in a way where she presents Hitler as he is, keeping away from inserting her opinions in the first person. We also learn from biography the idea of glorifying a race as a method of “purifying” a nation. Although we think that Nazi Germany and Hitler’s ideas were so different than us, we see hints of glorifying a race in America. “Make America Great Again” was really a chant of white supremacy fueled by racist white people wanting to “send immigrants back where they came from.” I think it is necessary to learn about him because his story gives us insight into WW2 and makes you think about how this evil can be inside of us all, it’s not just the fault of one person. The saying that history always repeats itself, is why people study Hitler so aggressively. They don’t want Hitler’s history to repeat.

When asked if our infatuation of Hitler is similar to that of Beyonce or some other celebrity I would say absolutely not. That is from a 21st-century perspective, however. The articles I read for this post are evidence that in the early 1900s, people did have a genuine, positive interest in him. This interest of the 1900s is similar to ours of modern-day celebrities. The infatuation we see today between us and Hitler is not appreciation, but condemnation and curiosity.

the negotiator
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 25

Hitler is Human.

In my opinion, the reason why we are so intrigued by Hitler is because of all of the horrible things he did throughout WWII. We are intrigued because we think to ourselves “how could someone do such horrible things?” and “what led him to do this?” Adolf’s morals and decisions stray so far from “normal” humans that we are curious about what happened in his mind that caused him to commit such awful acts of terror. How could one person be led to such terrible actions? There are two groups of people in history who are strongly remembered in history: heroes and villains. There are those who are remembered for their heroic and brave acts and those who are remembered for the atrocities they caused. Before WWII, Hitler was just like any other human. He came from a poor family, fought in WWI, wrote a book, and became rich. He then bought his own house and lived in it with his sister. His acts of hate, violence, and genocide did not come until later. Hitler was a human. If we say otherwise we are saying that it is impossible for evil people like him to exist, which would be both untrue and ignorant. Also, as said in one of the sources, calling him a monster would be like forgiving him for his actions or giving him an excuse/cop out for what he did.

I completely agree with @Fidget in that he doesn’t deserve to be held apart from humans, or given a pass for the atrocities he committed. I could not have put it any better myself than when they said “He was a terrible, awful, person. Calling him a monster may make him seem misunderstood, or saying he had an illness may give you reason to be sympathetic, which I do not believe he deserves.”

After reading these sources I thought that I would better understand Hitler’s motives, but I do not. I thought that he would even have the slightest of reasons for doing what he did, or trauma that led him to do such things, but no, Hitler grew up and lived a very ordinary life. This really comes to show that heroes as well as villains are not born. They are created and formed over time. The big question for me is: what shaped Hitler into the evil that he was? What led him to commit these terrible acts?

I agree with @goob in that although Hitler isn’t responsible for everything that took place in WWII, and he drew inspiration from the Armenian Genocide, he was the main fire fueling all anti-Semitism throughout the war.

I don’t think we will ever truly understand Hitler. He was just an ordinary person who grew up in a poor family, wrote a book, and bought and fixed up a mountain home. If we never truly know what led him to commit such atrocities, I don’t think it is worthwhile to try to understand him. I still believe that we should learn about what he did and we should especially emphasize that he was just like any other human, so that future generations can learn that evil is formed, not born, and that humans who are truly evil should not be referred to as monsters so as to forgive the person and give reason for what they did. It is important to understand this so that we can learn from it and never let it happen again.

Posts: 23

Fascination or Gossip?

Before reading the articles, I had some prior knowledge of Hitler and his hobbies. I still remember doing declamation to one his most famous speeches in sixie year. Our fascination towards Hitler is definitely centered on how one person can lead one of the most horrifying genocides that ever happened in the world. I think the fascination is pretty similar to Donald Trump. Besides the fact that Trump is very limited to his actions because of the U.S government and current media, there is potential that their actions are pretty similar. Well if we take a look at Hitler’s rise to power:

“Hitler and his followers portrayed his rise as the result of the power of will alone, but you can see how he was able to exploit opportunities and circumstances. He exploited the weakness of his opponents to get closer to power.”

He was able to take advantage of the circumstances that were happening in Germany and give the people hope for something fresh. If we compare Trump, I’ll say Republicans and very patriotic people idolized him as a new beginning to the U.S, while everyone else sees him as a joke and a white man who’s doing this to benefit his company. Who would’ve thought he’ll become president?

However, I do believe even though Hitler is responsible for the holocaust, the fault should not be left in his own hands. This is a genocide. People around him supported him; other nations chose to intervene at the moment. He is a clever leader. Going back to what @madagascar and @purplenailpolish00 quoted, “No matter how many potted flowers and jade accents his home had, he was still the orchestrator of millions of deaths.” No matter how normal he might seem, there must be something off that made him think this is all okay.

These articles are definitely the 1930s equivalents of Oprah/Ellen/The View/”Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” celebrity-infused talk/gossip shows because everyone likes to hear gossip especially with famous/well-known people. Hitler is not a good person, but people are just interested because we crave gossip even if it's a global issue.

My biggest takeaway from the articles is that Hitler is a very creative person and crafty, but they didn’t really help me understand as a person on the inside. I feel like we were able to learn his rise to power and his secret hobbies he had on the side, but there just seems to be something missing. One thing I do know is that even if these articles make him sound more human-like and down to earth, it still shouldn’t be something people associate him with because it just sounds demeaning and lacks the purpose of him being the orchestrator of the whole situation.

Boston, MA, US
Posts: 16

The Humanization of the Inhumane

Reading these articles on Adolf Hitler felt subconsciously wrong. We learn about Hitler often, but never focus on things like his eating habits, sleep problems, the interior decoration of his home, or his hobbies. These articles give a human form to a man that history has conditioned us to demonize, one whose actions were so incredibly evil that the human race doesn’t even want to claim him as their own. Despite this massive distaste for Hitler, I feel like looking at him through the lens of a normal person makes him both even more terrifying and fascinating.

These articles feel similar to ones you would see about other celebrities such as Kim Kardashian or Beyonce, but I don’t think the infatuation can be paralleled. We read about Hitler’s personal life and are reminded that he was as human as you or me but even so he was able to commit such horrible crimes against humanity. This is a reminder of just how dark a person’s mind and actions can get and I think some believe that if they learn about all aspects of their life, they may be able to understand why a seemingly normal man would be filled with so much hate.

One may argue that are countless other people in this world with similar viewpoints to Hitler and similar levels of hatred but Hitler stands out as the mastermind behind the largest and most well known genocide in history. Another attribute to his fascination is that he had the ability to complete such atrocities. He started off as a government elected official that promised to bring the automobile to the working man and succeeded. He was seen as a beacon of hope for Germany and a warrior for the people. He gained immense power and trust and used this to turn a nation against those that didn't fit his image of the perfect person and was able to organize a mass extermination of those he didn’t like. He got people to view him with such respect that they would do whatever he wanted and believe whatever he believed, even if it meant killing people because of their religion, race, or sexual orientation. I think in some twisted way people envy this level of power over others and ability to get what one wants, even if it is not morally or ethically right.

As @purplenailpolish00 recalled from Kershaw, I agree that calling Hitler a madman would be an incorrect assumption. I completely agree that his belief system resembles that of a madman, who lacks no empathy or common sense, but his ability to manipulate people and get his way exhibits some level of intelligence. Calling him a Madman would also diminish his actions, when in reality it is clear that he was more than aware of everything he was doing.

After reading this and reflecting on Hitler’s ideas and his life, I don’t feel like I understand him better, if anything, I understand him less. Previously, I didn’t really think about the normal parts of him, the parts that paint a picture that people can relate to. Now that I see those parts of him, I see the fascination in understanding him, but I don’t understand the way his mind worked and the reasoning behind his actions still. It’s hard to believe that someone who shares so many similarities with me and other people I care about could be so evil. His humanity doesn’t change that fact and although the entirety of the Holocaust doesn’t fall on his back, I would still hold primarily him for blame.

Charlestown, MA
Posts: 9

Hitler among us

I will never be able to understand the fascination people, particularly teenage boys, have with Hitler. I had no interest when reading the details of Hitler's home and I don't think that it is anything special that he had a certain design taste or interest in the arts. I think that when people read the more intimate details of Hitler's life they are often shocked to see him as human/a regular person. Earl Grey Tea and many other of my classmates talked about how it was jarring to read the mundane/human details of such an evil person´s life. I have never viewed Hitler as this larger-than-life pure evil being. All people can be evil and selfish. Hitler was just a bigoted man who wanted power, he is no different from any other politician or leader in the past.

In recent years, we have stared evil in the face with the Black Lives Matter movement. There are evil racist people who are fully capable of having regular lives with regular interests. People think that Hitler must have been obsessed with his hate and fixated on it constantly in order to commit such atrocities. I don't think that Hitler was any different than a racist person in America today. Many people don't even view their racism as hateful, it is simply what is correct for them. People think Hitler had no morals/humanity but he very much had compassion for other human beings as long as they were exactly like himself. Hitler was not morally weighed down by his actions because he did not view the people he killed as humans. It is not surprising to me that Hitler was kind to the children in his neighborhood and the staff in his home. In the south, there were some of the seemingly sweetest people(think southern hospitality) who lynched black people and saw nothing wrong with it because they truly believed that black people were lesser. Hitler is not hard to imagine because he was not the only person who thought the way he did, he was simply smart/meticulous enough to lead others like himself. It is hard to imagine that such hatred exists. I don't know how Hitler could look into another human being's face, and not see himself even just a tiny bit. I think that it is much more important to focus on the victims of Hitler's crimes and learning their stories. People think that Hitler is so fascinating because they can not see themselves in him, they can not imagine being so hateful. Personally, I have had to be extremely honest with myself to confront the hatred that I was taught and to unlearn that. I think that if people did a little self reflecting, they would realize that Hitler is not so inconceivable and that they too need to work on correcting their implicit biases.

Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 19

Man of The Hour? Adolf Hitler

After reading through these cites and articles, it put Hitler back to the level of a person. Whenever reading about Hitler, he was always a demon-like figure almost equal to the devil himself, but when reading about him it made him more secular, and more of a person. Like when SPECIAL FEATURE: HITLER IN “HOMES & GARDENS” spoke about Hitler wanting to upgrade his sisters home, that was a genuinely heart warming and nice thing, and it showed that he did have a heart. Things like this for me personally made the atrocities he committed seem even worse, knowing that he understands what it’s like to have a family, and wants to care for them and want the best for them. I felt as though if I learned about a Hitler who through his childhood was beat, rejected, mistreated, neglected and just overall wronged, I would understand (NOT CONDONE) why he grew up to have such a problem which caused him to commit genocide, but instead he was loved supported, treated like a celebrity and still did these thing. Personally, learning about Hitler’s personal life didn’t change much of his character, as I said it made him seem more human, but also made him seem more evil. I feel the most important things to know about Adolf are that he was a military and country leader who led a genocide, while pushing terrible racist propaganda onto his populous, and I feel as though the reason why these things are most well to be known is because these are the only things I feel your opinions should be based on. There is no possible way for anything he’s done or gone through that could overshadow the atrocities he committed.
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 18

The Fascination with Hitler

I think the reason why people are so fascinated by Hitler is because he is a monster that is responsible for millions and of deaths and people wonder how he became the way he is. It is interesting to read that he once seemed like a regular human being who enjoyed art, music, and cutting flowers. The article about the interior design of his home is like reading about a celebrity's home in Architectural Digest. The article humanizes him by mentioning how he treated his gardeners more like friends than people who worked for him. He also seemed to take his health seriously since he was a vegetarian and never drank or smoke. It was also interesting to read how he had a "Fun Fair" for the local children and would invite them to the house for treats. The whole thing makes you think if you weren't reading about him he would be a nice guy, when in actuality he was a evil person. It makes you wonder if one thing in his life had gone differently, would he have turned out the same? I remember viewing his artwork in class and how he got rejected from art school. If he hadn't been rejected, would he still have been the man who did all these beyond horrible things in the Holocaust? In the interview with Ian Kershaw, it says that Hitler was not a madman because "Why would 60 million Germans follow a madman," but he was a narcissist seeking revenge.

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