Book Review Ian Kershaw – Hitler

Discussion in 'Books, Films, TV, Radio' started by Maksym Chornyi, Apr 13, 2019.

  1. Maksym Chornyi

    Maksym Chornyi Active Member


    An enormously detailed 2000-page-volume ‘HITLER’ by Ian Kershaw is indeed among the best examples of military history studies. As mean to express respect to the author, I have made, as always, an enthusiastically detailed material on the first volume (1889-1936: Hubris). I invite you to deepen into Kershaw’s career and motivation, to examine correlation with previous classic Hitler’s biographies (Bullock, Fest, Maser, Hamann, Toland), to draw the lines on popular myths with I. Kershaw.

    I hope this exhaustive book review would motivate you to invest time in reading. I would greatly appreciate your feedback. You may now find a ‘follow’ button within the article to stay in touch.

    HITLER by Ian Kershaw: A detailed analysis of the book

  2. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    BBC audio from 5th October 2000 (approx 45 mins): BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, Hitler in History

    "Hitler in History - In Our Time
    Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss how history has struggled to explain the enormity of the crimes committed in Germany under Adolf Hitler: we have had theories of ‘totalitarianism’, and of ‘distorted modernity’, debates between ‘intentionalists’ and their opponents the ‘structuralists’. The great political philosopher Hannah Arendt said, “Under conditions of tyranny, it is far easier to act than to think”. But somehow none of these explanations has seemed quite enough to explain how a democratic country in the heart of modern Europe was mobilised to commit genocide, and to fight a bitter war to the end against the world’s most powerful nations.With Ian Kershaw, historian and biographer of Hitler; Niall Ferguson, fellow and tutor in Modern History at Jesus College Oxford; Mary Fulbrook, Professor of German History at University College London."
    Chris C likes this.
  3. smdarby

    smdarby Well-Known Member

    I studied Modern German History under him at Sheffield University when I was a student there back in the early 1990's. It was quite intimidating attending his seminars, as you might imagine. I remember I was involved in a presentation of the functionalist v. intentionalist view of the holocaust. For some reason I was landed with defending the intentionalist view - Kershaw of course generally agrees with the "twisted road to Auschwitz" theory.
  4. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    A pair of books I put firmly on the 'if you've not read them, maybe really consider doing so' list.
    Central figures to a historical field require solid biographies. These could hardly be more solid.
    Bullock is very very good on Adolf, both in A Study in Tyranny & Parallel Lives, but nothing quite matches Kershaw's thorough dissection. Immensely readable style, too. Not a struggle, despite daunting size.
    Incredibledisc and Tolbooth like this.
  5. Maksym Chornyi

    Maksym Chornyi Active Member

    Thank you for this personal story. I have some visualizations, that one day I would shake the hands of the authors I respect and Kershaw is among these titans of history.
  6. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    Last edited: Jun 17, 2021

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