"In Hitler’s Thirty Days to Power, distinguished Yale historian Henry Ashby Turner makes an important and influential addition to his life-long study of Nazi Germany. Providing vivid portraits of the m"
Yale historian Turner (German Big Business and the Rise of Hitler) here subjects to microscopic examination the fateful 30 days before Hitler became chancellor of Germany in January 1933. Although many of the facts are known, this study reveals that the Nazi dictator did not come to power as the result of "impersonal forces." The slender, analytical volume indicates that rather, at a time of mortal peril for Germany-and the world-intrigue was the order of the day in Berlin. Turner follows the machinations of the principals-Chancellor Kurt von Schleicher; conspirator with Hitler and former chancellor Franz von Papen; President Paul von Hindenburg-to demonstrate how they all played unwittingly into Hitler's hands, believing they could control him once he took office. Turner concludes that far from being inevitable, there was a "high degree of contingency" and not a little luck in the Fhrer's ascendancy. Moreover, as Turner points out, the Nazis' standing in the polls had been eroding for months before Hitler's triumph. Students of German history and extremist movements should enjoy this fast-paced narrative. (Nov.)