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Assess the Effectiveness of the Nazi Party in Creating Changes in German Society in the Period 1933-39

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Assess the Effectiveness of the Nazi Party in Creating Changes in German Society in the Period 1933-39

From 1933, the Nazis Party have aimed to create the policy of Volksgemeinschaft, this is a component focused on the heart of the people’s community based on traditional values of the German people. The German society underwent radical changes under the Nazi regime as Hitler introduced various policies that have had a substantial effect on 6 prominent groups: German women, youth, schools and universities and churches, working class and the Jews. The implementation of Hitler’s new policies in the period 1933-1939 can be assessed to have significantly effected and transformed Germany society socially and culturally.

Women were immensely affected by the policy of Volksgemeinschaf as Nazi Party had conservative aims when it came to the role of women. Within months of Hitler coming to power, many female workers were sacked. Goebbels claimed that the main tasks of women were to “be beautiful”, to bring “children into German society” and only take jobs “suitable for a woman” [ ]. These were epitomised in the propaganda slogan “Kinder, Kuche and Kirche” (children, kitchen and church). Hitler’s intention was to create a new family life by emphasizing new policies, making it subject to Nazi ideology and hence he wanted to reverse the declining birth rate and increase the number of “racially pure” births in Germany.

Hitler had initiated changes that insisted women should return to their traditional roles as home makers and provide healthy offspring to the Nazi state. Child-bearing was encouraged in Germany, however this was only acceptable to the “Aryans” not the Jews. Hitler has implemented policies such as financial incentive marriage loans and special medals were given to women who gave birth to large families. He also made divorce difficult, abortion and contraception illegal in order to achieve his objective effectively. Also, women’s organizations were created to indoctrinate women with Nazi ideas such as “The German Women’s Enterprise”. These programs promoted cookery classes, marriage, motherhood and nationhood. The women’s organizations have had a major effect on Nazi women as it portrayed that Hitler made effective changes in order to develop women to be the mothers of a future, healthy generation. Hitler disliked clever, educated women and by 1933, women were restricted to hold any position of importance of professional jobs, while the men wore the uniforms and jackboots [ ]. Women were expected to stay home and make babies and hence Hitler’s radical policies from 1933-1939 has effectively been implemented in order to reinforce the male dominated Nazi view of women’s role in German society.

The policy of Volksgemeinschaft planned to change the German society and to accomplish this, the Nazi Party had effectively created a rival organization to the formal education system called the Hitler Youth (Hitler-Jugend). Hitler Youth’s chief slogan was “We are born to die for Germany” [ ] and it was designed to capture the minds of German youth and indoctrinate them with Nazi ideology. The youth were encouraged to join the Hitler Youth and by December 1936, membership became compulsory, which has increase to over 8million members [ ].

The Hitler Youth was mainly male orientated and was intended for those aged 10-18. However by 1936, Hitler has decided to set up junior groups called “Pimpfen” for children aged 6-10[ ] to prepare youngsters for Hitler Youth. The boys had regular military training and learnt about the Nazi themes and the emphasis of the activities was placed on political indoctrination, physical fitness, discipline and endurance. Also, a special section of the Hitler Youth was established to cater for girls, called the “German Girl’s League”. Hitler youth girls were indoctrinated in the principles of service and regimentation and the emphasis of the league was placed on the importance of racial purity and developing the domestic skills required for motherhood. The Hitler Youth also took on the role to spy upon their parents and report any anti-Nazi sentiments which has eradicated the youth’s individualism, hence this shows the significance of Hitler creating changes in order to control the social aspect of Youths in hope of achieving his aim of the Volksgemeinschaft.

In Nazi Germany, conformity was extended to schools and universities as education meant indoctrination. Hitler used the schools to promote Nazi ideas and to educate the themes of racial hygiene and the glories of Germany’s past. By 1937, non-Nazi teachers were sacked under Hitler’s wishes and universities were purged of all Jews. The school curriculum was dominated by subjects that served Nazi’s purpose. The German History was rewritten to glorify the fatherland’s past and students were being taught Anti-Semitic

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