Hitler's Charisma: Leading Millions Into the Abyss

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Vintage Books, a division of Random House LLC, 2014 - Biography & Autobiography - 354 pages
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At the age of twenty-four, in 1913, Adolf Hitler was eking out a living as a painter of pictures for tourists in Munich. Nothing marked him in any way as exceptional, but he did possess certain distinguishing characteristics: a capacity to hate, an inability to accept criticism, and a massive overconfidence in his own abilities. He was a socially and emotionally inadequate individual without direction, from whence came a sense of personal mission that would transform these weaknesses and liabilities into strengths--certainties that would provide him not only with a sense of identity, but of purpose in a communal enterprise. This is the focus of Laurence Rees's social, psychological, and historical investigation into a personality that would end up articulating the hopes and dreams of millions of Germans.

(With 16 pages of black-and-white illustrations)
 

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HITLER'S CHARISMA: Leading Millions into the Abyss

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A searching study that addresses the question, not why so many Germans and Austrians accommodated Adolf Hitler, but why they so ardently embraced him.Fresh from the news that the Nazi labor- and death ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
3
PART ONE THE ROAD TO POWER
7
Discovering a Mission
9
Making a Connection
21
Searching for a Hero
33
Developing a Vision
44
Offering Hope in a Crisis
56
Being Certain
68
The Lure of the Radical
117
The Thrill of Release
131
Turning Vision into Reality
145
The Great Gamble
179
Charisma and Overconfidence
203
False Hope and the Murder
232
Last Chance
259
The Death of Charisma
272

PART TWO JOURNEY TO
79
The Man Who Will Come
81
The Importance of Enemies
108
Acknowledgements
295
Index
331
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About the author (2014)

Laurence Rees is the writer, director and producer of the BBC TV series The Dark Charisma of Adolf Hitler. The former head of BBC Television History programs, he has specialized for the last twenty years in writing books and making television documentaries about the Nazis and World War II. Previous projects that were both series and books include Auschwitz: The Nazis and the Final Solution and World War II Behind Closed Doors. In 2006 Rees won the British Book Award for History Book of the Year for Auschwitz. Educated at Oxford University, he was appointed in 2009 a senior visiting fellow in the International History Department of the London School of Economics and Political Science. In 2010 he launched the multimedia website WW2History.com, which won best in class awards in the education and reference categories at the 2011 Interactive Media Awards. He lives in London.

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