The Moral Imperative: New Essays on the Ethics of Resistance in National Socialist Germany, 1933-1945

The Moral Imperative: New Essays on the Ethics of Resistance in National Socialist Germany, 1933-1945

The Moral Imperative: New Essays on the Ethics of Resistance in National Socialist Germany, 1933-1945

The Moral Imperative: New Essays on the Ethics of Resistance in National Socialist Germany, 1933-1945

Synopsis

The Moral Imperative: New Essays on the Ethics of Resistance in National Socialist Germany, 1933–1945 explores a number of the moral codes that inspired, justified, and sustained the resisting conscience in the Third Reich. This collection of essays, by seven of the top scholars working on the history of the German resistance, including Klemens von Klemperer, Peter Hoffmann, and Beate Ruhm von Oppen, relates the contributors' expressions to the cultural and institutional realities of a totalitarian state. Topics covered include the church and the resistance, the Prussian conservative element, and the persecution of the Jews as a motivation for resistance by non-Jews.

Excerpt

The six essays published here were given at the conference, Christianity and Resistance: National Socialist Germany 1933-1945, in the Barber Institute of Fine Arts at the University of Birmingham on 19-23 April 1995. It is worthwhile to place them in that context, and also important to thank those who contributed to the occasion in other ways. This was an international gathering of one hundred scholars and students, public servants and private citizens, and its main purpose was to encourage a discussion of the significance of the subject from a variety of different angles. the conference was inaugurated by the General Secretary of the World Council of Churches, Dr. Konrad Raiser, and closed by a speech by Professor the Baroness Williams of Crosby. the sessions were chaired by Eberhard and Renate Bethge and the Rt. Revd John Austin, bishop of Aston, the diplomats Sir Julian Bullard and Dr. Peter Hermes, Professor Jeremy Noakes of the University of Exeter and Professor John A. S. Grenville of the University of Birmingham. On the first day Gräfin Marion Dönhoff and Christabel Bielenberg shared their experiences and insights in a public dialogue. On the last day the Rt. Hon. Frank Field M.P. (now minister of state for Social Security) lectured on the legacy of the bishop of Chichester, George Bell. Discussions were chaired by Dr. Lothar Kettenacker of the German Historical Institute in London, the Rt. Revd Professor Peter Selby (now bishop of Worcester), Professor W. R. Ward, Professor F. Burton Nelson of North Park Theological Seminary, Chicago and Professor Geffrey Kelly of La Salle University, Philadelphia, the Revd Canon Paul Ostreicher of Coventry Cathedral, the Revd. Martin Hüneke and the Revd. Canon Hugh Searle of the International Bonhoeffer Society, the Revd. Dr. Keith Clements (now General Secretary of the Conference of European Churches), the Revd. Canon Alan Wilkinson of Portsmouth Cathedral and the Rt. Revd Anthony Dumper and Professor Klemens von Klemperer. Concerts by the Rose String Quartet, Philip Fisher (Piano), Roy Theaker (violin) andVivian McLean (piano) took place in the evenings. the conference concluded with a eucharist at Birmingham Cathedral on the fiftieth anniversary of the deaths of Klaus Bonhoeffer, Riidiger Schleicher, Hans John, Hans Ludwig Sierks, Carl Adolf Marks . . .

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