Saturday, August 30, 2014

Books on Julius Streicher

To my surprise, it took along time to get a biography of Julius Streicher.  My dissertation on him was finished in 1975 and appeared in book form in 1983, with a second somewhat expanded edition in 2001.  It has sold well over the years and is the only English-language book on Streicher that remains in print.

Since I am a rhetorician, however,  I was interested more in the content of Streicher’s propaganda than in his biography, but since there was so little in English I did give two chapters of biographical material.  It was rather thin, and as a graduate student at the time I was only able to manage about a month in the German archives.  I missed some useful sources and other valuable sources surfaced after I completed the book.

Dennis E. Schowalter’s Little Man, What Now? Der Stürmer in der Weimar Republic is a fine book that appeared in 1982, but as the title suggests covers only the period before 1933.

There is also William P. Varga’s The Number One Nazi Jew-Baiter (New York: Carlton Press,  1981).  It was originally his 1974 dissertation at Ohio State.  Like my book, he did not have access to a variety of useful sources.

After that there was a long silence. Streicher was the most prominent Nazi leader who lacked a full biography.  There were books and articles that covered aspects of Streicher’s career, but the kinds of books one can find about Hitler, Goebbels, Himmler, and other Nazi leaders were missing.

That situation has now been remedied.  First came Franco Ruault, who completed an enormous dissertation at the University of Innsbruck in 2006.  It was published in two parts totaling over 950 pages:

“Neuschöpfer des deutschen Volkes”.  Julius Streicher im Kampf gegen “Rassenschande” (Frankfurt: Peter Lang, 2006)

and Tödliche Maskaraden. Julius Streicher und die “Lösung der Judenfrage” (Frankfurt: Peter Lang, 2009).

It’s hard to know what to say about Ruault’s project.  It’s not a biography, although it has biographical elements, and it’s not really a study of Der Stürmer and its propaganda, although it does cover some of that.  Ruault is interested in patriarchy and sexuality.  The prose is sometimes obtuse — although I have difficulties reading similar material in English so it just may be my denseness.  His books aren’t the place to start if you are interested in Streicher.

Then there is Ralph Keyser's Der Stürmer: Instrument de l'idéologie nazie, une analyse des caricatures d'intoxication (L’Harmattan, 2012).  This looks to be more a study of the Stürmer’s contents than a biography, but since I don’t read French I cannot say much about it.

I’ve just finished reading the book I’m surprised did not get written years ago: Daniel Roos’s Julius Streicher und “Der Stürmer” 1923-1945 (Paderborn: Ferdinand Schöningh, 2014).  

It’s based on his 2013 dissertation at the University of Würzburg. It is a fine piece of work. I learned a lot.  Roos had access to a much wider range of sources than I did back in the mid-1970s.  He does a good job of laying out Streicher’s biography and also of analyzing the anti-Semitic content of Der Stürmer.  It is well-written.

At over 500 pages, Roos’s book does suffer from the weakness of dissertation writers, which is to include everything one finds.  The book would have been better, perhaps, were it one hundred pages shorter.  Still, this is where to start if you are interested in Julius Streicher, assuming you read German.  Otherwise, you can always read my book.


Kevin said...

Interesting stuff. I wish all those books can be translated into English. Are there any plans to do so that you know of?

Anonymous said...
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Randall Bytwerk said...

I don’t think so. The market is too small to justify a translation.

Anonymous said...

The Ralph Keysers' book "Instrument de l'Ideologie Nazie" ("Tools of Nazi Ideology") is indeed a study of Der Sturmer drawings put in a socio/geo-politic context. It analyzes each drawing based on the year events and provides an interpretation of the meanings behind each drawing. the book is structured around main events/categories such as Pro-German Caricatures, Anti-Semite caricatures, Attacks against churches, Spanish War, Annexation of Austria, Morocco, Emigration to Palestine, etc...
I am happy to provide more information/translation in English if required (I am a half French and half Swiss, leaving in Chicago and working on my genealogy - as my grandfather was a "Kriegsgefangener" and spent some time in Stalag VI-D in Dortmund, I am bound to spend research time around that period; and I am particularly interested in all aspects of Nazi propaganda). Thank you for your research work.
Pierre Lana

Ralph Keysers said...

Pleased read

I send to many works about Fips and the Stürmer.

Many Thanks

Ralph Keysers

Ralph Keysers said...

On amazon France you can found my books (5) and some papers on Many thanks for reading. Ralph

Daniel Roos said...

Sehr geehrter Herr Bytwerk,

vielen Dank für die freundlichen Hinweise auf mein Buch. Ich freue mich umso mehr, da Ihre Arbeit für mein Interesse an Streicher und dem "Stürmer" vor mittlerweile über 10 Jahren maßgeblich mit verantwortlich war.

Herzliche Grüße aus München/Deutschland

Daniel Roos

Marc Clarà Sala said...

Anyone knows how I can get the book of William P. Varga The number one Jew-Baiter: A political biography of Julius Streicher?


Randall Bytwerk said...

Not many copies were printed. If you live in the United States, a library can get a copy for you by interlibrary loan. If you live somewhere else, visit your nearest library and see if they can borrow a copy for you.

Marc Clarà Sala said...

Many thanks Randall. I'm from Girona. I contact with the library of my university and they can get a copy for me. Days ago I bought your book and I'm waiting the arrival to starts to read. Sorry for my bad english.

Ralph Keysers said...

Je viens publier deux livres à partir des dessins de Fips publiés dans le Stürmer.

Le crayon du diable 1 et le crayon du diable 2

Ils sont disponibles sur Amazon.

Je recherche des spécialistes qui veulent bien écrire un article au sujet de ces livres. Merci.

Ralph Keysers
1 rue du vieux chateau