Ask any moderately intelligent person to name the bane of the 20th century and nine out of ten will probably answer “Adolph Hitler”. A few might answer Joe Stalin or Chairman Mao but Hitler is the lens through which we view the carnage of mid-century.
On the other hand, a young millenial might answer “Madonna”. So much for public education.
Our understanding of the Second World War and the preceding years are refracted through our comprehension of the “mad Fuhrer”. It is the ghost of Adolph Hitler who carried the world to total war and with pseudo-scientific fanaticism exterminated millions.
It is the ghost of Adolph Hitler who shapes our understanding of the world; that persuades us that our opponents comprise “The Other” – the imponderable, fundamentalist crazies. The ghost of Adolph Hitler shapes what we think about all dictators and the societies they rule; that each is a replica…
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