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Theorist of Cosmic Ice

Christopher Clark: Himmler, 11 October 2012

Heinrich Himmler 
by Peter Longerich, translated by Jeremy Noakes and Lesley Sharpe.
Oxford, 1031 pp., £25, October 2012, 978 0 19 959232 6
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... The ascent (if that’s the right word) of Heinrich Himmler to become the chief architect of Nazi genocide is one of the strangest strands of the regime’s story. There have been several studies of this enigmatic man, but Peter Longerich’s massive biography, grounded in exhaustive study of the primary sources, is now the standard work and must stand alongside Ian Kershaw’s Hitler, Ulrich Herbert’s Best and Robert Gerwarth’s Hitler’s Hangman: The Life of Heydrich as one of the landmark Nazi biographies ...

Still messing with our heads

Christopher Clark: Hitler in the Head, 7 November 2019

Hitler: A Life 
by Peter Longerich.
Oxford, 1324 pp., £30, July 2019, 978 0 19 879609 1
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Hitler: Only the World Was Enough 
by Brendan Simms.
Allen Lane, 668 pp., £30, September 2019, 978 1 84614 247 5
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... Hitler. To turn to Peter Longerich’s Hitler: A Life, superbly translated by Jeremy Noakes and Lesley Sharpe, is to re-encounter the sober, appraising diction that Knausgaard deplores in Kershaw’s writing. Longerich is in no doubt that his subject was emotionally ‘retarded’ and unable to feel empathy. Hitler’s early life reveals, he writes, a ...

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