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Assess the impact of Nazi Policies on the position and role of women in Germany, 1933-39

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Introduction

Assess the impact of Nazi Policies on the position and role of women in Germany, 1933-39 The Nazi regime aimed to utilise the family for its own needs. Women were obligated to marry and have children, instead of having their own personal decisions. The functions of the family were reduced to the single task of reproduction. They aimed to break the family, and to place it as a breeding and rearing institution completely in the service of the totalitarian state. The main objective of Hitler and the Nazis was to increase population to help with 'Volksgemeinschaft'. Germany had a declining birth rate, so they wanted to promote higher birth rates among the Aryan race. This was another key element of the policies adopted. Women were encouraged to have as many children as possible, however this was not acceptable with 'undesirables' like Jews and Black people, only 'Aryans'. ...read more.

Middle

This did mean that some women felt more valued and appreciated in their roles, especially as they could have stability and moderate prosperity. However the ideals set by Hitler did include encouragement of birth outside marriage, which conflicted with the role of women staying at home. The effects of the growth in female employment and the encouragement of divorce to 'undesirables' meant that the position and role of women diverged and was conflicted. The role and position of a woman in Germany was to support her family as well, to nurture and care for their children. The Nazi theory and policy was clear; Kinder, Kirche und Kuche (Children, Church and Cooking) summed up the Nazi view of women in German society. Their role was to produce babies, bring up children and care for their homes and husbands. The three K's were closely connected to the Nazi view of family life. ...read more.

Conclusion

Again, there are conflicting issues that arise with this. Remembering that the ideology of women to uphold a traditional and rural society, in fact new organisations were set up for women, the Nationalist Socialist Women's Organisation (NSF), and the German Women's Enterprise (DFW). These organisations were set up for with Nazi beliefs, but were actually disagreeing with the traditional, rural beliefs. From this a mixed picture emerges, some women gained as a result of the personalised and individualised nature of the evidence. Even though the Nazi theory and policy were clear, there were significant contradictions and conflicting issues in practise. The roles issued to women were self-undermining and had logistical inconsistencies, for example, they could not have all the men out fighting and women home, who runs factories etc? These contradictions show some of the irony of Nazism. Some women felt more valued and appreciate and felt more stable, whereas others were sterilised, outlawed, and divorced on spurious grounds. The role and position of women varied between different groups because of the impact of Nazi Policies. 1 ...read more.

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