The Dictators, the Second World War and the Holocaust

History Today, November 2003 | Go to article overview

The Dictators, the Second World War and the Holocaust


The psychologist David Lewis sets out to explain how psychiatric treatment in 1918 helped Hitler transform himself from a drifter and a frustrated artist into the most charismatic leader of the 20th century, in The Man Who Invented Hider (Headline, 20 [pounds sterling]).

Peter Neville shows how Mussolini's plans to turn Italy into a Great Power were thwarted by infighting within the Fascist party in his new biography Mussolini (Routledge, 9.99 [pounds sterling]).

Responses to Nazism in Britain 1933-1939: Before War and Holocaust, by Dan Stone (Palgrave, 50 [pounds sterling]) uses a wide body of neglected literature to consider how Nazism was perceived in the interwar years.

The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the Exploitation of Jewish Suffering (Verso, 8 [pounds sterling]) has been reprinted with a new and shocking postscript for the 21st century.

A History of the Dora Camp: The Untold Story of the Nazi Concentration Camp That Secretly Manufactured V-2 Rockets (Ivan R. Dee, 27 [pounds sterling]) by Andre Sellier is a first-hand account of the atrocities witnessed by one man while imprisoned in one of the largest Nazi concentration camps.

Words to Outlive Us: Eyewitness Accounts from the Warsaw Ghetto (Granta Rooks, Royal 20 [pounds sterling]) edited by Michal Grynberg, introduced and translated by Philip Boehm, is a remarkable collection of written testimonies of men and women who suffered in the ghettos during the Second World War.

The Lesser Evil: the Diaries of Victor Klemperer 1945-1953 (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 25 [pounds sterling]) is the third and final volume of the diaries of this Jew from Dresden which have been hailed as one of the most important chronicles of the 20th century.

Tank Rider: Into the Reich with the Red Army by Evgeni Bessonov (Greenhill, 18.99 [pounds sterling]) are dramatic and irrepressibly frank memoirs of what it was like to fight on the Eastern front, written by an officer in an elite Guards unit of the red Army.

In The Algeria Hotel: France, Memory and the Second World War (Methuen, 7.99 [pounds sterling]) Adam Nossiter focuses on events that occurred at Bordeaux, Tulle and Vichy in order to assess the nature of France's collaboration with the Nazis.

Containing a foreword by Christopher du P. Roosevelt, Robert F. Cross' Sailor in the White House: The Seafaring Life of FOR (Naval Institute, $28.95) looks at the ways in which Roosevelt's love of seafaring influenced those around him and even effected events of the Second World War.

Ten Days to D-Day: Countdown to the Liberation of Europe by David Stafford (Little, Brown, 20 [pounds sterling]) looks at the events leading up to the invasion of Europe, day by day, from the perspective of a selection of people, ranging from a 19-year-old Wren, to a school teacher with the French Resistance, a Norwegian political prisoner and Nazi commander Erwin Rommel. …

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