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The Sanctity of Rural Life : Nobility, Protestantism, and Nazism in Weimar Prussia - Shelley Baranowski

The Sanctity of Rural Life

Nobility, Protestantism, and Nazism in Weimar Prussia

Hardcover Published: 1st February 1995
ISBN: 9780195068818
Number Of Pages: 280

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In The Sanctity of Rural Life: Nobility, Protestantism, and Nazism in Weimar Prussia, Shelley Baranowski explores how and why the rural population of eastern Prussia turned to Nazism in large numbers. She explains the role of the rural elite and the church in propagating a myth of the stability, the wholesomeness, and the class-harmony - in short, the "sanctity" - of rural life that encouraged the spread of Nazism.
This study identifies the contributions of the rural elite in the eastern Prussian provinces, namely Junker landlords and the Protestant clergy, to the rise of National Socialism in a region where the rural electorate's attraction to the Hitler movement became critical to the Nazi takeover in 1933.
Using the province of Pomerania as a primary example, Baranowski argues that rather than emerging strictly as a protest against the domination of elites, as is regularly suggested, the Nazis had to address issues that rural elites defined in order to establish a foothold among rural voters. The most significant issue was the conviction that the urban bias of the Weimar Republic threatened the survival of the rural economy and culture. Despite the social tensions that surfaced periodically, the anti-republicanism which united all rural classes encouraged rural dwellers to turn to Nazism as the salvation of rural society.
This ground-breaking work makes a major contribution to our understanding of Protestant and rural support for Nazism and adds an important cultural and religious dimension to our understanding of the underpinnings of Nazi power. It will be of interest to historians and students of modern European and German history.

Industry Reviews

"This exemplary study of politics and society in rural Pomerania on the eve of the Nazi takeover makes a significant contribution to our understanding of the complex and symbiotic relationship between traditional Prussian conservatism and National Socialism."--German Studies Review "Well-crafted....The book is based on extensive research in archives in Germany, Poland, and in church collections in the US, and it also reflects familiarity with the latest scholarship on Weimar Germany."--CHOICE "...A valuable contribution to German social history in the twentieth century."--American Historical Review "Baranowski's persuasive depiction of the Junkers' anti-Weimar mentality and machinations will prove indipensable to future research."--Central European History "This book is a major contribution to German social history."--HISTORY

Introductionp. 3
Foundations of Continuity: Pomeranian Agriculture and Landownership from the Reform Era to World War IIp. 17
Agriculture and Industrial Underdevelopmentp. 18
Noble Landownership and Marriage Patternsp. 27
Continuity Survives Revolution: Pomeranian Conservatism from the Reform Era to Stabilizationp. 35
A New Beginning?p. 39
Power and Obligation: Social Relations in the Estate Villages After the Revolutionp. 51
The Estate Community: From the Center to the Marginsp. 55
Born to Rule, Born to Servep. 68
The Politics of Proximity: The Referendum on Expropriationp. 78
Personal Authority and Modernity: The Compatibility of Oppositesp. 81
Social Constraints and Political Limitations: Pomerania's Evangelical Churchp. 83
Secularization Defied: Pomeranian Protestantism's Rural Rootsp. 85
The Sins of the Cities: Sectarianism and Moral Declinep. 102
Pomeranian Estate Owners, the Rural People Movement, and the Young Plan Referendump. 117
From Weakness to Disaster: Pomeranian Agriculture After Stabilizationp. 118
Political Pressures: The Dissolution of the Manorial Districts and the Left's Resurgencep. 126
Peasant Wars and Junker Initiativesp. 128
Fluid Boundaries: Pomeranian Conservatism and the Nazi Onslaughtp. 145
Radicalism and Respectability: The Spread of Nazi Influencep. 150
Succumbing to Right Radicalism: The Evangelical Church Relentsp. 171
Epilogue: Pyrrhic Victory: Pomeranian Conservatism in the Third Reichp. 177
Notesp. 187
Bibliographyp. 243
Indexp. 261
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780195068818
ISBN-10: 0195068815
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 280
Published: 1st February 1995
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 16.71  x 2.31
Weight (kg): 0.6

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