Explaining Hitler: The Search for the Origins of His Evil

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Harper Collins, Jun 9, 1999 - History - 444 pages
4 Reviews
When Hitler's war ended in 1945, the war over Hitler--who he really was, what gave birth to his unique evil--had just begun. Hitler did not escape the bunker in Berlin but, half a century later, he has managed to escape explanation in ways both frightening and profound. Explaining Hitler is an extraordinary quest, an expedition into the war zone of Hitler theories. This is a passionate, enthralling book that illuminates what Hitler explainers tell us about Hitler, about the explainers, and about ourselves.

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User Review  - Litblog - LibraryThing

Years ago, at a flat-warming party, I was taken to task for having a biography of the religious fundamentalist Ian Paisley - the false assumption being that having a biography of someone means sharing ... Read full review

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The book sold itself to me due to the title and the cover. The title because this question has fascinated me since I was a little girl and read The Diary of Anne Frank and The Rise and Fall of the ... Read full review


The Baby Pictures and the Abyss
The Mysterious Stranger the Serving Girl and
The Hitler Family Film Noir
The Forgotten First Explainers 3 7
Rethinking Hitlers Thought Process
Part Three
Hitlers Songbird and the Suicide Register
The Big Oops
A Cautionary Parable
Claude Lanzmann and the War Against
There Must Be a Why
Part Seven
Singling out the Jewish
The Passion Play
Blaming Germans

The Sexual Fantasy
Part Four
The Shadow Hitler His Primitive Hatred
Part Five
Blaming Adolf Hitler 3 69

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About the author (1999)

Ron Rosenbaum grew up on Long Island, New York. A graduate of Yale with a degree in English literature, he left Yale Graduate School to write full-time. His essays and journalism have appeared in Harper's, Esquire, The New Republic, Vanity Fair, and The New Yorker; he's done eight cover stories for the New York Times Magazine. He is the author of four previous books, including one novel and three collections of his essays and journalism, most recently Travels with Dr Death and Other Unusual Investigations.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning writer and historian Thomas Powers called him "one of the few distinctive voices of modern American literary journalism." His work has been characterized by the essayist Phillip Lopate as combining "the skills of a terrific investigative reporter and an accomplished literary stylist with an idiosyncratic streak all his own."

More than ten years ago, he began investigating certain unresolved controversies among Hitler biographers, and ultimately embarked on an odyssey that took him from Vienna and Munich to London, Paris, and Jerusalem. The book that emerged combines original research and dramatic face-to-face encounters with historians, philosophers, psychologists, and theologians as they attempt to account for the elusive figure of Adolf Hitler and the meanings projected upon him by his explainers.

Currently Ron Rosenbaum writes for the New York Times Magazine, and The New York Observer, and teaches a course on literary journalism at the Columbia Graduate School of journalism.

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