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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent collection of sources implicating Hitler, 6 April 2013
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This book is not a work of narrative history on the unfolding of the Holocaust and as such it is not really aimed at a general reader. Rather, it is a series of short chapters on significant turning points as the Nazis moved towards the Final Solution. In each chapter Hitler is located at the heart of the decision-making process, sometimes explicitly through his own deeds and speeches, more often than not indirectly in second-hand documentary evidence e.g. the diaries of Himmler and Goebbels, important speeches of senior Nazis such as Polish Gauleiter Hans Frank, and the paper trail emanating from the Reich Security Main Office.

What Longerich manages to do is to illustrate beyond any doubt that Hitler was the driving force of Nazi racial policy and that power did indeed flow downwards - despite the often fragmented nature of decision-making in the Third Reich which so-called 'structuralist' historians have done much to reveal. As such the book is a forceful rebuttal to both the Flat-Earth denialists such as David Irving and those genuine historians such as Gotz Aly who see Hitler as relatively peripheral in the formulation of Jewish policy.

As a History teacher I also find this book an excellent store of primary sources as it sticks so closely to the documentary material.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Background reading, 10 Oct. 2013
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This review is from: The Unwritten Order: Hitler's Role in the Final Solution (History of Nazism) (Hardcover)
There is not much that is new for someone who has read a lot on the subject. It stresses Hitler's role.
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The Unwritten Order: Hitler's Role in the Final Solution (History of Nazism)
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