Diary of a Man in Despair
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Description: “My friends have warned me about my writings. Driven as I am by internal necessity, I must ignore their warnings and I must continue these notes, which are intended as a contribution to the cultural history of the Nazi period. Night after night I hide this record deep in the woods on my land...constantly on the watch lest I am observed, constantly changing my hiding place.” Friedrich Reck might seem an unlikely rebel against Nazism. A minor aristocrat who had made a career writing fiction for the masses, he was not just a conservative but a rock-ribbed reactionary, who played the part of a landed gentleman, deplored democracy, and rejected the modern world outright. To Reck the Nazis were ruthless revolutionaries in Gothic drag, and helpless as he was to counter the spell they had cast on the German people, he felt compelled to record the corruptions of their rule. The book that resulted, published only after Reck’s death in Dachau and after Germany was defeated, is less a diary than a sequence of stark and astonishing snapshots of life in Germany between 1936 and 1944. We see the Nazis at the peak of power, and we see the murderous panic with which they respond to approaching defeat. Reck describes the travesty of traditional folkways that the Nazis engage in the name of theVolk, ruminates on the character of Hitler and regrets a missed opportunity he had to shoot him, describes the bombing of Munich, joins the resistance, and waits for arrest knowing he has been betrayed. This riveting book is not only, as Hannah Arendt proclaimed it, “one of the most important documents of the Hitler period” but a moving testament of a decent if sometimes deluded man struggling to do the right thing in a depraved world.
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All the information you need in one place! Each Study Brief is a summary of one specific subject; facts, figures, and explanations to help you learn faster.
List price: $18.95
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: New York Review of Books, Incorporated, The
Publication date: 2/12/2013
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.50" long x 0.50" tall