Join us for the first program in a series of expert presentations from Dr. Adam Blackler, Ph.D. and Associate Professor of History at the University of Wyoming, all of which will provide context and historical background for the themes and concepts presented in Americans and the Holocaust, a traveling exhibition for libraries, currently on display.
The Weimar Republic (1919-1933)—Germany’s first liberal democracy—was not doomed to inevitable failure. Much to the contrary, it imparted women, men, and children with new opportunities that a diverse and eager citizenry seized enthusiastically. The same circumstances that helped usher in German democracy, however, also incited the emergence of extremist right-wing movements throughout a defeated and deeply embarrassed country. Among these was the Nazi Party (NSDAP). As one of many nascent political organizations, the NSDAP sought the revocation of the Treaty of Versailles, a return of forfeited territory, and the expulsion of all so-called “foreign enemies” beyond Germany’s borders. This presentation will explore how Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party navigated the contours of German democracy—both legally and illegally—between 1920 and 1933. It will place particular emphasis on the Nazis’ evolution into a “catch-all party,” as well as its use of xenophobic propaganda, street violence, and political obstruction to achieve political power in January 1933.
(Adults; Cottonwood Room)