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The Final Solution

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The devastating events that occurred during the Germans "Final Solution" of World War II left an imprint on history that embodies the most atrocious crimes capable of the human spirit. Whatever could have led the Germans to the abominable events of WWII? The Germans written by Gordon A. Craig takes a detailed and complex look at the Germans throughout history covering every aspect of German life from the rise and fall of Hitler to the centuries of achievements produced by German scientists, artists and philosophers alike. Craig takes a small step away from the carnage of the Holocaust and reveals that the Germans have had more to offer the world than their worst moment in history. Craig's argument throughout his book explains, "that Germans aren't like anyone but the Germans and in their view of history, can hardly expect to be"1 and that "no people is harder to generalize about than the Germans"2. Craig's main conclusions as established in his introduction are that: The year 1945 represented a caesura in German history that was sharper and more conclusive than any previous break in modern times, infinitely 1918. In the aftermath of the Second World War and the tensions of the Cold War, two German States were born with political and economic systems ...read more.


The Germans is not a book that can be simply 'skimmed' - it is a book that requires complete attention to detail as the superfluity of historical dates, places and significant people embodies its general essence and it is very easy to get lost in dates if attention wavers. Gordon A. Craig is a highly reputable writer of German history. When The Germans was published he was a Professor of Humanities Emertius at Stanford University. Craig has written a large number of books on German history, his classic books Politics of the Prussian Army, 1640-1945 and Germany, 1866-1945 have won him the Historian's Prize of the City of Munster and the Gold Medal of the Commonwealth Club of California. Among these awards Craig has also been nominated for a National Book Award. Steering away from his awards, Craig first went to Germany in the mid-1930's thereby adding an element of personal experience to his credibility on the German topic. In comparison to other works about the German people, Craig submits valid and reliable information. His bibliography proves this in that 15-20 books or articles have been referenced to support each chapter. Further analysis of articles that were not referenced in The Germans also provides verification of Craig's historical evidence. ...read more.


effects and triumphs for the German people pre-war and the economic and social strife the German people had experience post-WWI and their diminished hopes and nationalism that was temporarily restored by Nazi rule. Beyond the Holocaust, Craig's book has advanced my understanding as to why Germany has always been a country that has differed from the rest of the world. In the first part of The Germans, Craig brings together a synthesis of events starting from the tenth century to the twentieth century. Craig's fusion and examination of the historical events of Germany throughout centuries furthered my understanding about how Germany being known as das Lande der Mitte (country in the middle) has influenced the way she has developed in relation to the nationality of her people and her isolation from the rest of Europe. The Germans is a valuable book for anybody who wishes to further his or her knowledge on the complicated and intricate German people. 1 Gordon A.Craig, The Germans. (New York: 19910, p.15. 2 Ibid., p.11. 3 Ibid., p.10. 4 Ibid., p.163. 5 Suzanne Rouette. "Mothers and Citizens: Gender and Social Poilicy in Germany after the First World War". 6 Course Guide. "Hitler the Statesman: The Making of the Hitler Myth". p. 252. 7 Craig, The Germans, p.69. 1 ...read more.

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