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Nazi Architecture, Albert Speer and Hitler's Passion for Architecture


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8 replies to this topic

#1 flibblebibble



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Posted 06 November 2008 - 01:41 AM

Hello one and all.

I've joined these forums because i thought it could help to get some expert advice on a project i'm doing.

I'm an English Architecture student and for my history assignment, have decided to report on the Architecture of the Nazi regime. Firstly i'd like to state that i in no way agree with the regimes' values, i just have an interest in how the Nazi's used Architecture as propaganda and symbols of power.

My knowledge of WWII is fairly limited though i am learning more by the day.

I'd be interested in any points people have to offer, but in particular i'm looking for;
  • Explaination of the timeline of construction and reasons for construction
  • What wasn't built
  • The bunker systems
  • Hitler's interest in Architecture
  • Albert Speer
  • any links or pictures that could be of use

I have a loan copy of 'Albert Speer - inside the Third Reich'. I also understand the links with Roman and Greek Architecture and political theory, and also know that the styles were also inspired by neoclassicism and Art Deco.

Any help would be much appreciated.

'Peace is not the absence of conflict but the presence of creative alternatives for responding to conflict - alternatives to passive or aggressive responses, alternatives to violence.' Dorothy Thompson

#2 Mussolini


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Posted 06 November 2008 - 03:05 AM

Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe Hitlers interest in Architecture was two fold.

1. Awe Inspiring. Much like Cathedrals served to dominate the landscape and inspire the citizens, and Castles reflect the strength of a nation, Hitler wanted the same thing. His 'Third Reich' needed to last a thousand years. This grand structures he had planned would belittle the people due to their size, and there would be nothing like it in the rest of the world. People would come to Germany to see these marvels. It also said to the international world that Germany was powerful.

2. The Artist Within. Hitler was an artist. As previously discusses, he was rather average but had a very good eye for architecture and excelled in drawing and painting architecture. I believe he had a predisposition to the grandiose and it was only natural for him to pursue an aspect he was actually complimented on.

#3 Za Rodinu

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 09:05 AM

You might try and look up on Ernst Neufert, he had a very influential (and thick) book on "The Art of Designing in Architecture" or something like that, but I don't think this was translated into English. My father had the Spanish edition but my mother got rid of it before I could pounce on it.

Here it is after all!

Architects' Data: Ernst Neufert: ISBN 9780632057719

Amazon.com: Ernst Neufert: Books

You should also find this book interesting: Amazon.com: Art of the Third Reich: Peter Adam: Books

See the "also bought... " too!

Online you'll have some good insights on Searching for Hitler

Best of luck!

Quousque tandem abutere, Catilina, patientia nostra...

#4 Jan7



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Posted 07 November 2008 - 07:22 AM

Dear Flibblebibble:

In first place, welcome to the WW2F;)!

In second, a link very interesting for you. I read his lines, and possibly answer more of your questions, and give photographs and information: Top Ten Nazi Architecture

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#5 Za Rodinu

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 08:03 AM

Fine site even if I disagree with some items ;)

You show up rarely, but when you do you make it worth it :)

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#6 PzJgr


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Posted 07 November 2008 - 02:13 PM

Howdy FB and welcome to the forum. Here is a great site that I like which shows some of the Nazi architecture and the use of such architecture and symbols used to seduce the population.

Third Reich in Ruins


#7 flibblebibble



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Posted 07 November 2008 - 06:24 PM

Thank you all for your contributions so far, the links are extremely helpful.

Mussolini, i agree with your points and from what i have read so far it seems that Although Speer was responsible for everything that was constructed, it was in fact Hitler who was the driving force behind it all and his visions for German Architecture were impressive to say the least. It is a case of his purpose and his relentless and unsympathetic need for the end goals which was questionable...

Jan, thanks for your site, extremely helpful. Though i am questioning where the 'Arc of Triumph' is on the list... :)

I'll be working on the project for the next few months (along with what seems like a thousand others!) So progress may be slightly slow...

But i'll keep you all up to date and hopefully post some images of the final work when completed, along with any compiled information i have gathered on the way.


#8 savini



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Posted 31 October 2011 - 12:49 PM

hey fibblebibble..

im also an architecture student writing my history essay coincidentally on the same exact topic!
how did your project turn out? what were the main topics that you discussed and were there any other books that you looked at that were helpful?

i need to write a 6000 word essay on this topic and have only one week to do it.. so im looking for as much help as possible, as fast as possible!

thanks a bunch!

#9 Martin Bull

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 06:22 PM

Fibblebibble hasn't been around here for a while - but in the meantime, I'd recommend 'Hitler And The Power Of Aesthetics' by Frederic Spotts ( Hutchinson, 2002 ) for an interesting discussion about Hitler, art and architecture.
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