Latin School of Chicago

Latin Magazine Winter 2018

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Page 57 of 59

Looking Back Celebrate events, people and places from Latin's history with a visit to the school's archives. New Course Reassesses The Nazi Mind This excerpt from Latin's newsletter, Pro tem, was written by Ingrid Dorer Fitzpatrick in January 1980. While the pages of history are lled with the triumphs and achievements of man, they contain also a long record of human suering. e 12 years of National Socialist rule in Germany are part of that record. More than 30 years after the end of World War II, the atrocities of the Nazi era still haunt us. Neither the news and lm industries nor the world of scholarship and our consciences have let us forget. Never before had modern technology been put in service of such massive destruction conceived and carried out by a major modern state. e almost unimaginable destruction, the genocide of a people, the dedication of a nation to Nazism, the implications for the present and future leave countless unanswered questions. Among the student body at Latin, the interest in the Nazi era remains clearly evident, and the decision to add a course on this period to the history curriculum thus stemmed in part from student concern. It stemmed, too, from personal interest – from a belief that this period of history was immensely important, from a historian's conviction that the years 1933-45 should not be studied in isolation from the whole of German history or its European context. e course which evolved, "e Nazi Mind," thus seeks to accomplish several goals: 1) to deal with German history in its European context from the 19th through the mid-20th century, to examine the people – the leaders and the "little men" – who played a part in the Nazi rise to power; 2) to evaluate various aspects of Nazi ideology, from the concept of a total revolution to the foundations of the racist theories which culminated in the "nal solution;" 3) to examine how the victims and their Nazi aggressors coped with the dehumanizing society created in the concentration camps; and 4) to address the question of the ultimate meaning of this period in history. L B 56

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