Mains Marks Booster     4th August 2023        

Reasons for Rise of Nazism:

  • Great Depression and economic turmoil and Fear of communism and political polarization:
  • Role of Hitler: Hitler presented himself as a charismatic, strong leader and tapped into German nationalism, offering solutions to the economic and social challenges faced by the country.
  • Weaknesses of the Weimar Republic: The Weimar Republic, established after World War I, faced numerous challenges and weaknesses. Political instability, economic hardships, and social unrest created a disillusioned and disenchanted population.
    • The failure of the democratic system to effectively address these issues created a vacuum that allowed for the rise of extremist ideologies like Nazism.

Impact of Nazism:

  • Reconstruction and economic policies: Hitler implemented state programs to reconstruct the German economy, focusing on full production, employment, and economic self-sufficiency.
    • This included public works projects, military rearmament, and centralized control over key industries.
  • World War II: In 1939, Germany's invasion of Poland sparked the beginning of World War II.
  • Tripartite Pact and international power: The signing of the Tripartite Pact between Germany, Italy, and Japan further solidified Hitler's claim to international power and influence.
  • Holocaust: The systematic persecution and extermination of six million Jews.



Nazism provides a living example of the totalitarianism and authoritarianism which can inevitably lead to loss of world peace and millions of lives. 

Similarities Between Fascism & Nazism

  • Extreme Nationalism: emphasis on building greatness and prestige of the State. For eg. Hitler offered to build Germany into a great power creating a ‘German Reich’.
  • Expansionism: Acquisition of new territories. For eg. Italy acquisition of Abyssinia, Hitler’s vision of creating ‘Lebensraum’ (living space) for the citizens though addition of new territories.
  • One-Party Rule & Totalitarian system of Government: It gradually transformed from "one party rule" to "one man rule", with emphasis on the cult of the leader.
  • Extreme hostility towards Communism: both Mussolini and Hitler captured power with a promise to uproot Communism/Socialism.
  • Economic self-sufficiency: This was considered essential for greatness of state. Thus, economy was completely regulated and State supported the ideas of capitalism, mercantilism and colonialism.
  •   Military strength and violence: Expansionist ideas and totalitarian state necessitated huge spending.

Difference between Fascism & Nazism

  • Extreme Racism: Nazism was based on racial superiority of Germans. This concept was absent in Fascism.
  • More brutal and ruthless: Nazism was more brutal towards other races, especially Jews. Mussolini focused on territorial expansion rather than creation of ethnically ‘clean’ Italian state.
  • Absence of accountability: In Fascism, Mussolini was questioned and controlled to some extent by the monarch or the Pope, but under Nazism there was no authority above Hitler.
  • Degree of success: Nazism was more deep rooted and more efficient in terms of dealing with economy, unemployment etc.
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