Women and Young
- All schools under Nazi control. All school books were rewritten and included Nazi ideas about hatred of the Jews and war. Boys and girls went to separate schools.
- All teachers had to join the Nazi Teachers League
- The curriculum was changed. Subjects concentrated upon German history and nationalism. Girls were prevented from studying science and could only learn the mathematics necessary to be a housewife.
- In History: pupils were taught about great events of German history, from a pro-German point of view. The Nazis view of the First World War, the ‘stab in the back’ was included as ‘the truth’.
- In Biology: Pupils were taught “race science”, which was designed to “prove” the superiority of the German race.
- In PE: pupils got much more PE; boxing was compulsory for boys; girls were taught to cook and care for the home.
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Nazi Youth Movements
- Children joined at the age of five and stayed until eighteen. Membership was virtually compulsory. Boys joined the Pimpfen, then the German Youth and then the Hitler Youth. Girls joined the League of German Maidens.
- Children took part in activities, camping, sports, outings. made Youth movements popular at first.
- Had lectures about Nazi ideas, like racism. Girls were taught about child-rearing. Boys did activities which prepared them for the army: cleaning rifles, reading maps, throwing hand grenades, doing mock parachute jumps and going on long marches.
- The meetings were in evenings and at weekends. Girls found that they had little time for homework. This was to prevent them having a career.
- Children were encouraged to spy on their parents and report what they did and said.
- In 1933 30% of young people in Germany were in the Nazi Youth movements; by 1938 it was 82%. By later 1930s some young people were getting resentful of the time the Hitler Youth took up, and the lectures they had all heard before at school.
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Men and Women
- Nazi Party was a man’s party. No women in senior positions.
- Women: three 'Ks': Kinder, Kirche, Kuche or Children, Church, Cooking (encouraged by propaganda). To produce more racially-pure Germans and to solve unemployment.
- Women had to give up work when they married. Couldn't be civil servants, lawyers, judges or doctors. Men preferred in job applications.
- Couples received a loan of 1,000 marks on getting married. Less and less of this loan had to be paid back the more children you had.
- Women with hereditary diseases or metal illness sterilised. Unmarried women could volunteer to have a child by a 'pure Aryan' SS member.
- 1936 Olympic Games held in Berlin. Rhineland reoccupied. Transport improved,more security.
- Trade unions abolished and workers had to join Labour Front. Wages were low and rose more slowly than business profits. Conditions were tough.
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Labour Service and Labour Front
- National Labour Service started before Nazis came to power. It used government money to provide jobs for unemployed: building bridges, roads, forests. Nazis expanded this. Hitler was very keen on building first motorways (Autobahns).
- All men had to spend six months in the Labour Service from the age of 18, after they left Hitler Youth. Wages about 50p per week (low), but everything was provided. They wore uniforms and marched like soldiers to work everyday. Much of the work was done by hand and not machinery so there were more jobs.
- Labour Front took over from banned trade unions. Workers could not be sacked on the spot but could not leave their job without government permission.
- Workers had to pay membership dues to Labour Front (deducted from their wages).
- By 1939: Labour Front had increased number of weekly hours worked from 60 to 72 (including overtime).
- Strikes were outlawed. Average factory worker was earning ten times more than those on dole money so few complaints.
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Strength through Joy (KdF) and Beauty of Labour
- Nazis supplied theatre performances, hikes, sporting events, holidays, cruises, museum tours, exhibitions, weekend trips, lectures and provided sports facilities in factories and workplaces.Was a sure way to win support.
- Workers averaged between 6 and 15 days paid holiday each year. Under Weimar it was between 3 and 8 days.
- 1938: KdF launched Volkswagen (The People’s Car), designed by Ferdinand Porsche. It was priced at below 1,000 marks-repayable over 4 years.
- By November 1940, there were 300,000 potential purchasers. No one received a car.
- The millions of marks invested were re-directed into the expanding weapons industries. This accelerated as World War Two approached.
- Beauty of Labour was section of German Labour Front which aimed to improve working conditions in factories. It introduced features like washing facilities and low-cost canteens. It organised factory celebrations, folk dancing and political education.
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- German re-armament gave a huge boost to industry, which soon had millions of new jobs.
- From 1935 Hitler ordered the building of submarines, aircraft and tanks.
- The army was increased from 100,000 to 1,400,000 by 1939. Every man did two years military training after the Labour Service.
- People were removed from the list of unemployed: Jews, women, young men in the National Labour Front.
- By 1936 recorded unemployment was down from 6 million to 1 million; by 1938 industry was short of workers and during war workers were forced into German factories from countries the Nazis had overrun.
- In war Nazis were forced to allow women to work, as industrial output increased.
- Hitler wanted the German economy to be self-sufficient so that it would be able to operate even in a war. Foreign imports were restricted and research put into finding substitutes for rubber, petrol, coffee and cotton. This policy was known as Autarky.
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Persecution of Minorities
- Hitler blamed Jews for defeat of Germany in First World War. He wanted to purify German blood by eliminating all Jews and other minority groups.
- Only about 1% of Germany population were Jewish. They were well-integrated, filling many positions in society, and contributing to it.
- From 1933, Jews were subjected to increasing persecution in Nazi Germany.
- April 1933: Jewish shops were boycotted. Storm-troopers stood outside shops and stopped Germans going in. Slogans were painted on shop windows.
- 1933: Jews were also banned from some professions: doctors, dentists and civil service.
- 1935: Nuremberg Laws announced. Made Jews second class citizens and prevented them from marrying non-Jews. All kinds of civil rights were removed: voting, going to university, travelling, attending a theatre, cinema or sporting event.
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- 1938: a young Jew assassinated a German diplomat in France. This led to an organised attack on Jewish shops, houses and synagogues all over Germany.
- 91 Jews killed; 20,000 arrested.
- The Jewish community in Germany had to pay a ‘fine’ of 1 billion marks.
- From early 1939 Jews were banned from owning businesses; all men to add the name 'Israel' and all women the name 'Sara' to their own.
- The aim of the Nazis was to force Jews to leave Germany and many did, going to Britain, France and the USA in particular. But once war broke out this became more difficult, so Jews were forced into Concentration Camps.
- The Nazis also persecuted homosexuals, Slavs, Negroes, gypsies, the mentally and physically disabled and tramps.
- Many were put into concentration camps and were later murdered.
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