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April 03, 1938 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1938-04-03

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The German State And The German
Universities Examined In New Books

Wholesale Dismis'sals
Of Professors
Carried Out
ward Yarnall Hartshorne, Jr.,
Harvard University Press, Cam-
bridge. $200.
Of all our social institutions, the
University; perhaps, lends itself least
to regimentation. Yet the Nazi re-
gime after consolidating its political
control, immediately attempted to ex-
tend its influence into the social
sphere and made drastic changes in
the administration of German Uni-
versities. Mr. Hartshorne, in his
carefully documented book sets forth
these changes and their effect on Ger-
man higher education. For the most
part he treats his material dispas-
sionately, content to let the facts
speak for themselves, but occasionally
he turns sharply on the Nazis and de-
fends free education warmly.
The most apparent blow to Ger-
man education was the wholesale
dismissal of University teachers,
mostly for being "non-Aryan" or
"politically unreliable/' Approximate-
ly 1,650 scholars have been dismissed,
many of whom have found refuge in
other lands, to the enrichment of
foreign cultures, and the impoverish-
ment of Nazi culture,
But other, internal reforms have
had a greater effect. The entire uni-
versity system has come under the
Minister of Education. Neither the
faculty nor the student body any
longer 'have a voice in university
administration. The position of the
man on the faculty especially has
been undermined. He is distracted
by forced participation in official
functions. He must read official news-
papers and magazines and answer
for all his actions to non-intellectual.
critics. So far had professorial pres-
tige sunk that the state had to re-
call students from their newly-ac-
quired arrogance, and take. steps to
"make the students work."
Significant too has been the recast-
ing of the curriculum to conform with
Nazi ideology. Most courses have re-
mained the same in name but their
complexion has completely changed.
Wherever it is possible they become
fields for systematic indoctrination
along Nazi lines.' Generally the ten-
dency has been for the retention of
the practical science, and the rejec-
tion of s'peculative sciences except in-
sofar as they may be used for propa-
The size of the student body has
been reduced due to widespread un-
employment in professional fields.
Also it is recruited to a greater ex-
tent from the peasant and working
classes which it is held are entitled
to benefits from the state because of
the basic position of these classes
in the new state.
Before Hitler assumed office a
large portion of students and univer-
sity graduates were enthusiastic and
even violent supporters of national
socialism. Disgruntled by what they
believed were vices in the university
system, upset by the economic dis-
! tress that held all Germany, they
were ready for any reform. How-
ever, there is little evidence that they
relish the reform as it has been
carried out. There will be a struggle
for the final supremacy of the state
over the universities. Should the
state be victorious "the universities
may well become as much a state in-
stitution as the post office" . . . if not,
"the disorderliness of the students

TRAINING that will get you'
that office job, where your gen-
eral education and ability will
really mean something.
Classes now forming to start

An Objective Analysis
Of 'The House
Hitler Built'
By Stephen H. Roberts. Harper and
Brothers, New York. $3.00.
In a recent review of The House
That Hitler Built, it was noted that
the nearest approach to a "Man from
Mars" objective outlook would be the
analysis of a man from Australia. Al-
though this may not be an altogether
logical comparison, yet it has re-
mained for an Australian history pro-
fessor, Stephen H. Roberts, to present
in this book what has been re-
ceived as one of the most careful and
impartial studies of Nazi Germany
that has been written.
I am' a little wary of any analysis
of such a controversial issue that
professes an objective approach, be-
lieving that such an approach is an
impossibility. There 'are too many
factors that come into play in such
a work for it to attain a complete
neutrality: the writer's own convic-,
tions and attitudes, censorship with-
in and without the country, and the'
publisher's eye toward popular ap-
In this book, however, Profesosr
Roberts has presented as fair, de-
tailed and complete a picture as is
possible. His treatment is not an
impassioned plea for one thing or
another. Hitler, to him, is not a
bogey-man, but merely a rabid pa-
triot doing what he sincerely thinks
is best for the good of his country.
He is not here concerned with a
strict evaluation, or whether Na-
tional Socialism is a good or an evil.'
Rather, Professor Roberts has given
an honest, concise, and restrained
study of the whole scene, in all its
varied aspects, leaving his own per-
sonal opinions and predictions for
the end, where they are incorporated
in a concluding chapter.
The author's power of prophecy in
this last chapter is almost uncanny.
The predictions of taking over of the

army by Hitler and the subsequent
Anschluss with Austria are amazingly
One'of the most commendable
things in the book is its integration
and organization. Tracing the rise
of the movement from the beginning,
each aspect is given a separate sec-
tion apd treated in detail. This is one
of the few works that gives any
sensible analysis of the economic as-
pects of National Socialism, recogniz-
ing this more than anything else as
the weak spot of the entire strue-
In a chapter entitled "The Bal-
ance Sheet of Hitlerism," Professor
Roberts gives an account of "what
the onlooker sees" and "what the
onlookerdoes not see." Here he de-
scribes the public works projects, the
youth movement, the labor drive, and
the fight for Aryanism. In the un-
seen category come the propaganda
push, the position of the Jews, the
the nature of the laws.
In describing some of the aspects
of the Rome-Berlin axis, Professor
Roberts observes: "The basic truth
is that the Germans have little faith
in Italy's fighting power, and they
feel that events in Spain support
their estimate. :Moreover, the two
countries are in harmony only be-
cause of their common enemies . .
The Italians are not popular in Ger-
many, but Germany 'is- not in a posi-
tion to pick and choose her friends."
In commenting upon the hatred of
the Nazis for the Soviet Union, the
author notes: "The cardinal feature
of the bitterness between Germany
and Russia is that it is most con-
venient for both sets of dictators
The ranting about 'Jewish Bolshe-
vism' never palls in Germany, while
the diatribes against .Iitlerism serve
a similar purpose in Russia. A wag
has said that Hitler and Stalin ,pro-
vide each other with atrocity stories
Specials on Sunday
by reservation
Phone Ypsilanti 958W
1602 Packard Rd at ~Marion St.

MARCH 14, 1938: A DATE IN HISTORY--Reichsfuehrer Hitler greets
Arthur Seyss-Inquart, Austrian Nazi Chancellor who briefly succeeded
the ill-starred Kurt Schuschnigg and provided the transitional step
from independence to anschluss for his native land-and Hitler's.
rollege Square' Falls Short As A I
Revelation Of Faculty Back-Stage,

COLLEGE SQUARE by Susan Good-!
year, Charles Scribner's Sons, New1
York 1938. $2.50.
College students have often won-
dered how the "other half," i.e., the
faculty, lives, its feelings, its petty
and sometimes not so petty animos-
ities. In her new novel Collegei
Square, Susan Goodyear has attempt-+
ed to portray this aspect of college
life from a human point of view.
Centering her plot around a small
unexisting English college, Miss
Goodyear, who minus her pseudonym
is a well-known Englishwoman, de-
scribes the quarrels, the perpetual
hatreds among some of the profes-
sors there. Trying to evade super-
ficiality in her plot structure, she
entirely misses her mark. So much
time is spent dwelling on minute
subplots, jumps from this family
to that, that the central plot loses its
Nevertheless, some of her character
studies are well handled. The reader
is able to feel the cold severity of
Vice-Principal Marshall and his dis-
appointment at not being selected
principal at the death of the former
head, of his hatred for the young
man who was chosen to take charge
of the college, of his shock when he
finds his daughter engaged to the new
principal, of his cold calculating pur-
pose literally "to put the college on
the map," in spite of the heavy op-
position from other members of the
faculty. The reader can see Profes-
sor Lake, the nervous, underfed, sniv-
eling creature with all hid family-
numberless children and family
may force the state to undertake a!
fundamental revision of certain of the
more radical elements of official ide-1
ology in order not to imperil the na-
tion's science"

troubles, who tries to raise his stand-
ing through his daughter's marriage
to a son of an influential member
of the board. The reader can see his
daughter, Anthea, with her bright
red hair, freckles, smiling counten-
ance in spite of her troubles tak-
ing care of her countless brothers
and sisters. But that of Nicolette,
the vice-principal's daughter, is in-
consistent and difficult to follow.
- -




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