Germany and National Socialism

In order to be able to understand and interpret Morton Rhue’s novel The Wave, it is also essential to deal with the period of National Socialism in Germany. It is precisely this period that Ben Ross is dealing with his students when he comes up with the idea for his unusual experiment.

The instruments of power and oppression in the Nazi state from 1933-1945 are of particular importance here. The so-called Gestapo (Secret State Police) as well as the concentration camps take a separate position. 

Before 1933, Germany and its people were not in good shape. The Weimar Republic and the Great Depression had plunged the country into deep disaster. Many people were in trouble, and both the financial and supply situation (especially as far as food was concerned) were alarming. At this point, Hitler's right-wing party came to the attention of the desperate people.

The NSDAP (National Socialist German Workers' Party) had a tight organizational structure with a large number of different positions, from block leader to Reich leader. The previo...

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