Albert Speer, the Hitler years : views of a reich minister

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dc.contributor.advisor Wires, Richard en_US Morris, Judith J. White en_US
dc.coverage.spatial e-gx--- en_US 2011-06-03T19:29:15Z 2011-06-03T19:29:15Z 1987 en_US 1987
dc.identifier LD2489.Z68 1987 .M6 en_US
dc.description.abstract The rationale for this study is Albert Speer's unique value as a source of information concerning the Third Reich and Adolf Hitler. Although there is a wealth of information available on Nazi Germany and Hitler, the observations of this intelligent man who was an important official of the regime and a close associate of Hitler himself carry weight that no other report can match. He was a well-educated, intellectual, and articulate man who left behind three comprehensive books and many articles and interviews. In addition to such publications, there are, in the National Archives in Washington, D.C., many records of interviews with Speer conducted by Allied personnel immediately following the war. Those documents have been used extensively in this study.There is no attempt either to indict or to vindicate Speer, as many authors have done, but rather the purpose is to present in narrative form an analytical study of the relationship between the two men. The central focus throughout examines Speer and Hitler in juxtaposition and forms conclusions on the nature of their complex and compelling attachment. In the process, historical events form the backdrop as Speer describes them for us. It is always Speer, not Hitler, with whom the primary interest lies.The question of how anyone of Speer's background and intelligence could have given his life to a regime devoted to gutter politics, conquest of a continent, and genocide always arises in any study of Speer. The strange hold the Nazis exert on the world's imagination seems to ebb and flow, but does not die out, nor does the awful suspicion that something similar could happen again. Speer used his writings to describe the process and warn against its resurrection, especially in light of the tremendous leap in technology we have seen. Do not look for monsters, he counseled, for monsters are easily identified and avoided. Beware the manipulators who orchestrate on a national scale those policies which bring harm to whole populations, men who loudly proclaim their humanness and ordinariness.This inquiry is not an attempt to prove a predetermined hypothesis, since it embodies a historical approach rather than an experimental one. Information is drawn from the books and papers of Speer, as well as official documents, but secondary works to corroborate the basic sources are cited at times. There is still no definitive biography of Speer, although he appears as a central figure in many works. Perhaps one of the reasons for this is that the Speer family has put his personal papers in Heidelberg beyond the reach of anyone until 1999, probably as a result of his negative treatment in various publications.The technical papers from the Ministry of Armaments and War Production are housed in the Bundesarchiv at Koblenz, but were not pertinent to this study. The Institut fur Zeitgeschichte in Munich houses official papers, as does the Berlin Document Center, while the Washington has the transcripts of Library of Congress in Hitler's Table Talks, some parts of which are used in this study. Speer's books and published material give an extensive look at his part in the Third Reich, his relationship with Hitler, and his own feelings and observations concerning both. The International Military Tribunal records from Nuremberg are both extensive and enlightening. One may also view the collection of Heinrich Hoffmann, Hitler's personal photographer, in the Special Collections section at Bracken Library.Chapter I deals with Speer in the pre-war years as he rose to fame and became part of Hitler's inner circle, while Chapter II views the war years through Speer's experiences. In Chapter III the early relationship between Speer and Hitler is developed, and in Chapter IV the war, the collapse of the Third Reich, and the attendant disasters are covered. en_US
dc.format.extent vi, 254 leaves ; 28 cm. en_US
dc.source Virtual Press en_US
dc.subject.other Speer, Albert, 1905-1981. en_US
dc.subject.other Hitler, Adolf, 1889-1945. en_US
dc.subject.other Germany -- History -- 1918-1933. en_US
dc.subject.other Germany -- History -- 1933-1945. en_US
dc.title Albert Speer, the Hitler years : views of a reich minister en_US Thesis (Ph. D) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url en_US

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  • Doctoral Dissertations [3134]
    Doctoral dissertations submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University doctoral candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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