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Brainwashed Across Germany Essay

2310 words - 9 pages

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Brainwashed Across GermanyPart IStones From the River by Ursula Hegi begins in 1919 just after World War One ended and Germany is suffering from an economic downfall; soldiers coming home to their families are defeated and bitter. Germany has much devastation, high unemployment, and the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, helps to fuel the Nazi party. The author takes you back to a time when the Nazi party is coming to power and how they systematically murdered approximately 6 million Jews. What makes this story so tragic is how a small German town and its German people in the small communities are able to look the other way or collaborate with the Nazi soldiers to persecute their neighbors and once friends because they are Jews. Ursula Hegi having chosen Trudi Montag as the main character and heroin; shows how she is rejected from her peers and community throughout her youth because she is dwarf. She has few friends and feels like an outsider even though she is of German heritage. Trudi's stature and isolation helps builds her character and gives her the compassion and courage to help her Jewish neighbors escape the atrocities that await them if they are taken away by the Nazi's.Part IIThe book Stones from the River is set in 1919 just after World War I at a time when Germany has a stressed economy and soldiers who have fought in this war are coming home to their small towns and villages. The Treaty of Versailles, which was an agreement of the winning allies; the Big Four: Britain, France, Italy and the United States, this treaty is created to decide what to do with the losing countries of WWI. The losing countries were The Ottoman Empire, Hungary-Austria, Bulgaria and Germany. Germany was not asked to be involved in the treaty leaving them virtually helpless. Ten million soldiers died during WW1 and many countries were devastated and the Allies wanted Germany to pay because they believe Germany was mostly responsible for WW1. So they gather in France to write up the Treaty of Versailles to say Germany was to blame and as part of their punishment they reduced the size of Germany by 12.5%. (Ropp, War in the Modern World) and their land was absorbed by neighboring countries that bordered Germany. Because of this their population decreased by 6,500,000 people, and in the reduction they lost farmland, livestock and factories, which were all part of their economic stability. Impoverished with war debt, the German society struggles with financial unsteadiness and the lack of jobs, small town people become weary and hopeless.The disgruntlement of the German people and the economic woes is perfect ingredients to establish the Nazi party and put into place Adolf Hitler as Chancellor and der Führer of Germany. Adolf Hitler who is an anti-Semitic, charismatic speaker and savvy politician gives captive speeches. He preaches to soldiers about...

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