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Education In Nazi Germany

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Autor:  anton  06 March 2011
Tags:  Education,  Germany
Words: 1312   |   Pages: 6
Views: 374

Education

In

Nazi Germany

Adolf Hitler and the Nazi party heavily focused their attention and effort towards the German youth. It was Hitler's goal to create a super race of pure young, Aryan men so that the country would be ready for a long European war, where the Nazi's wished to expand their empire. They did this by changing what children learnt in school and creating certain youth groups for both girls and boys. These changes in the education and youth structures largely affected the mind set and life style of the young Germans. In order to promote and ensure the success of these education and youth movements, the Nazi government used propaganda and indoctrination in movements. Prior to the Nazi government coming to power, the education was similar to that of any other country, with unbiased information being taught to the young German students. Also young Germans, including Jews, were able to choose an out of school youth group and were not forced to participate in these school or the youth groups. The policies initiated by the Nazi's once they cam to power were working effectively in creating a strong, healthy and loyal future German race up until their defeat in 1945, when the Nazi's and their ideologies were destroyed and banished.

During the transition of power from the Social Democratic Party to the Nazi Party, Hitler introduced many changes to the Germany, especially in education. The Nazi's overall goal for the youth was to create an Aryan "super race" prepared for war in the future and to create loyal Nazi's by the time the young Germans reached adulthood. There were four main pillars of the national school and education system; these pillars were race, military training, leadership and religion. In the reorganised educational system, young boys were mainly taught German military history and physical fitness. PE took up about 15% of classes during the school week. The long term aim for these policies for the young German boys was to build them into strong, healthy leaders ready for combat. The main subjects that were affected by the changes included biology, which became the study of the superior Nazi race over different races as well as the problems of interracial marriages. Geography taught students about the land Germany had lost after the war and the need for Germany to have more living space for the increasing population. History became the study of Germany's glory, the German defeat in the Great War was explained as the work of Jewish spies, the Treaty of Versailles was the work of nations who were jealous of Germany's power and the hyperinflation was the work of Jewish saboteurs. In science students were required to understand the principles of shooting and military service.

Young girls were taught differently in some subject's science and eugenics. In these two subjects, women were taught the fundamentals of raising children as well as the characteristics to look for in a husband and father. As a whole, the young German's were taught anti semitic values and Jews were often embarrassed by the teachers in front of the class and were often beaten by their fellow class mates. Not only were Jews singled out but others including mentally ill and the disabled were ridiculed, even in exam papers. This is an example of a question in an exam paper. "To keep a mentally ill person costs

approximately 4 marks a day. There are 300,000 mentally ill people in care. How much do these people cost to keep in total? How many marriage loans of 1000 marks could be granted with this money?"(www.historylearningsite.co.uk). The teachers that taught in Nazi schools were required to swear their allegiance to Hitler by joining the Nazi Teacher's Association.

Another one of Hitler and the Nazi party's youth policies for the development of a future "super" army was the creation of Nazi youth groups and the abolishment of all other German youth groups. For boys their were 3 different youth groups for different age groups, The Little Fellows (6-10 years), The German Young People (10-14 years) and The Hitler Youth (14-18 years). These youth groups were created in 1922 and they grew as the Nazi party became more powerful, once the party came to power in 1933 there were 1 698 809 members involved. The aims of the Hitler youth were to control youth of Germany to accept and support the philosophy and ideas of the Nazi party and also to develop a future super German race. The Young People group was the starting point of the physical and psychological development of the German youth. These young boys participated in group activities such as hiking, endurance testing, compass reading and they were also taught the meaning and purpose of Nazism. The Hitler Youths main aims were to develop and build the young Germans into physical fit and strong young men. These boys participated in camping trips, military exercises, endurance tests, self discipline, loyalty and obedience towards their superiors. For these young men, the Hitler Youth was an exciting and interesting period but at some stages it would have been tiring and physically straining. Some of the stronger boys went to Adolf Hitler Schools where they learnt advanced physical training and leadership skills.

For young German women there were the League of German Girls (10-14 years) and the League of German Maidens (14-18 years). In these youth groups, girls were required to perform endurance tests as well as participate in hiking trips. The aims of the young women groups were to develop the German women into mothers and caring wives. The women were required to raise and care for the future strength of Germany. In the late 1930s both the boys and girl youth movements became compulsory for young Germans, except for Jews, to join.

Education and youth movements during the Nazi regime went through a massive change. These changes had both a negative and positive affect on the overall education of Germany. The negative affect on education was the limited information that the German students were taught, all the information that was taught the students was incredibly biased and the students were unable to properly learn any of their subjects in depth and as a result the German students would have a limited education, restricted by the government policies. Another negative to the change in policies was the physical exhaustion and humiliation of the physical endurance test and the PE classes. There were also positives that came out of the policy changes, these included the chance for the young Germans to meet new people and gain more friends because of the limited youth groups available. Also the physical fitness and motherhood lessons prepared the young boys and girls well for the future as well as keeping them fit and healthy during their youth. Throughout the Nazi regime, the youth movements gradually grew past 6 000 000 members, this figure proves the success of the Nazi manipulation of the German youth into accepting the Nazi ideology. The sole purpose of this educational structure was to create a future generation that was blindly loyal to Hitler and the Nazis.

Bibliography

В• Unknown. (2006). Nazi Germany. [Internet] Eduseek. Available from: http://www.eduseek.com/navigate.php?ID=946

В• Burleigh, M. (2006). The Third Reich. [Internet] Amazon books, UK. Available from: http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk

В• Gordeeva, T. (2005). German Culture. [Internet]. Alex designs. Available from: http://www.germanculture.com.ua/library/weekly/aa080601b.htm

В• Truemen, C. (2006). Nazi Germany. [Internet]. History Learning Site, UK. Available from: http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/Nazi%20Germany.htm

В• Fabian, S. (2006). Education in Nazi Germany. [Internet]. edHelper. Available from: http://www.edhelper.com/ReadingComprehension_35_371.html

В• Mason, K. (2003). Republic to Reich. McGraw Hill, Australia.

В• Shirer, W. (1960). Rise and fall of the Third Reich. Simon and Schauster, Germany.

В• Hirsch, H. (1988). Nazi Education. Educational Forum, Germany.



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