Group Title: American Christian press and pre-war Hitler's Germany, 1933-1939
Title: The American Christian press and pre-war Hitler's Germany, 1933-1939.
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 Material Information
Title: The American Christian press and pre-war Hitler's Germany, 1933-1939.
Physical Description: xix, 360 leaves : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Murphy, Frederick Ira, 1933- ( Dissertant )
Chalmers, David ( Thesis advisor )
Thompson, Arthur ( Thesis advisor )
McQuewn, Arthur ( Reviewer )
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 1970
Copyright Date: 1970
Subjects / Keywords: Christianity and politics   ( lcsh )
History thesis Ph. D   ( lcsh )
History -- Germany -- 1933-1945   ( lcsh )
Dissertations, Academic -- History -- UF   ( lcsh )
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Abstract: The judgments men make today on Nazism and Hitler's Germany have been influenced by subsequent events. This dissertation seeks to discover how the Protestant and Catholic press in America viewed Hitler's Germany in the years between his assumption of the Chancellorship in 1933 and the outbreak of war in 1939. For this purpose, editorials, columns, articles, and letters to the editor in representative Protestant and Catholic journals with a wide variety of theological, social, and political orientations were studied. The dissertation considers five basic topics: general attitudes toward Nazism, Hitler, and Germany during those years; the response of the American churches to the struggle between the German churches and the Third Reich; the opinions of the American churches upon the Jewish question and upon Hitler's handling of it; their reaction to such important events as German rearmament, the remilitarization of the Rhineland, Anschluss , and the Munich pact; and the ideas of the churches on such questions as America's role in the world, the legitimacy of a Christian's participating in war, and the likelihood of another war. Certain definite conclusions emerge from the study. The experience of World War I and the peace that followed heavily conditioned the attitudes of the American churches toward Hitler's Germany. Most journals believed that the Versailles Treaty and the Allies' subsequent treatment of Germany had been major factors in Hitler's rise to power. Most also regretted the extreme anti-Germanism of the American churches in World War I and were determined not to repeat it. These attitudes contributed to a tendency to view Hitler's early foreign policy moves with considerable tolerance. Most journals accepted Hitler's appeal to justice for Germany as a defense for his moves until Anschluss. There wasgeneral agreement that the Church as an institution should never again bless war. Some further concluded that Christians as individuals should not participate in war. While never a majority position in the 19305, pacifism was sufficiently strong to make inroads into such historic "just war" churches as the Lutheran and the Roman Catholic, and to place those who approved of participation in war on the defensive. On most issues there was no clear-exit division between theologically liberal and conservative journals. Ultimately they all condemned Hitler and Nazism. This condemnation was slower, however, from conservative journals, v:hich approved Hitler's strong anti-Communist stance. Approval abated as Hitler placed strong pressures upon the German churches to support his regime. Liberal journals tended to view Hitler's anti-Communism as a device for repressing ideas he did not approve. The journals tended to view the church situation in Germany in terms of what was happening to the particular branch of the German church to which they felt most kinship. Where such churches were left alone, as with the free churches, concern was much less pronounced. The evidence clearly indicated, moreover, that the average church member, Protestant or Catholic, was little disturbed by ecclesiastical developments in Germany. While every journal made at least a pro forma denunciation of anti-Semitism, it nonetheless was present. It ranged from the genteel, which saw the solution for the Jewish question in their total conversion, to the blatant, in letters to the editor of the Tablet . In no case, however, did an editor express approval of such extreme measures as Krystalnacht . There was no unanimity in attitudes toward Hitler's Germany. As the war began, however, most journals would have agreed that Nazism was a malignant threat both to Christianity and to Western civilization, that nonetheless the churches must avoid any fostering of hate for Germany, and that the United States should not become involved in the European war.
Thesis: Thesis - University of Florida.
Bibliography: Bibliography: leaves 357-360.
Additional Physical Form: Also available on World Wide Web
General Note: Manuscript copy.
General Note: Vita.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00097733
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: alephbibnum - 000559029
oclc - 13432924
notis - ACY4475


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