Synopses & Reviews
Joseph Goebbels was the most notorious demagogue of the twentieth century, and Hitler's closest confidant. This book uses his complete diary from 1923-1945, only recently released from the Soviet Union, to present a challenging new interpretation of his life. It charts Goebbels' rise from provincial obscurity in the Rhineland, through his emergence as the most dynamic speaker of the Nazi Party and the Gauleiter of Berlin in the 1920s, to his appointment as Hitler's Propaganda Minister in 1933. Combining analysis of Goebbels' relationships with women and of his political career, it argues that there were clear threads running through his life, from a turbulent adolescence through to his death. Goebbels' love of German culture, his obsession with 'sacrifice', his fascination for Hitler, and his hatred of the Jews led him into a fatal involvement with German politics which culminated in his suicide, together his wife and six children, in Hitler's bunker in 1945.
'...a welcome addition to the burgeoning library of 'perpetrator studies'.' - Literary Review
'…a detailed and well-written insight into the man at the heart of the Nazi propaganda machine….In his examination of Goebbels, Toby Thacker has produced a valuable addition to the printed history of the 1930s and 1940s.' - Britain at War Magazine
'Thacker's reassessment is convincing and welcome. Crucially, his new biography is the first to be written since the entire set of Goebbels' diaries has been published. He writes well, and offers the reader a number of important new contentions and insights.' -BBC History Magazine
'Judicious, insightful and the first biography based on the entire available diary record. This book is a must for anybody interested in Hitler's Germany and the origins of the Holocaust'.
- Brendan Simms, Peterhouse, Cambridge University, UK
An insightful new biography of Joseph Goebbels, Propaganda Minister of the 'Third Reich' and one of the most important and troubling figures of the twentieth century. The first account to use all of Goebbels' surviving diaries, it sheds new light on his personality, private life and political convictions, as well as his relationship with Hitler.
About the Author
TOBY THACKER is Lecturer in Modern European History at Cardiff University, UK, and has published two previous books relating to Nazi Germany: Music after Hitler, 1945-1955 and The End of the Third Reich: Defeat, Denazification, and Nuremberg, 1944-1946.
Table of Contents
List of illustrations
A note on translation
'This Awful Waiting'
'Starting to Find Firm Ground'
'The Coming Dictator'
'You are the Nobility of the Third Reich'
'We Will All Three be Good to One Another'
'These Masses Are What Matter'
'We are not Suited to be Executioners'
'An Indissoluble Community of Destiny'
'This People's War Must be Carried Through'
'A Life and Death Struggle'
'We Have Done the Right Thing'
'How Distant and Alien This Beautiful World Appears'
Bibiliography and Sources