Nazi Book Burning

1315 Words 6 Pages
There is an ongoing feud as to if censorship is appropriate to incorporate in governments, schools, and other institutions. Governments or other forms of authority engage in censorship in order to protect people from concepts they consider to be corrupt or immoral. Censorship eliminates evil mindsets and can help to prevent major conflicts from arising. On the other hand, censorship slows down creativity and innovation, violates citizens’ rights, and hides the truth. The Nazi Regime incorporated censorship into their society in a severe way. Books and other literature considered to be “Un-German” were thrown into the fire and burned to ashes. The purpose of books is to share knowledge, and book burning is the ultimate opposition, destroying …show more content…
Rather than the government organizing it, it was actually a group of students. They arranged it so there were many different locations involved. While singing Nazi anthems and saluting Hitler, the students, accompanied by stormtroopers, threw over 20,000 books and other forms of literature into the flames. Minister of propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, attended the book burning and delivered a speech. "The era of extreme Jewish intellectualism is now at an end...The future German man will not just be a man of books, but a man of character. It is to this end that we want to educate you… And thus you do well in this midnight hour to commit to the flames the evil spirit of the past” (The History Place). He continues and makes a point about how what is being done that night is a beneficial to German society, and from their actions, an improved society will arise (The History Place). In Goebbels's opinion, the best way to teach the youth is to burn unapproved …show more content…
They viewed it as students simply fooling around and acting immaturely (Rose 9). Even though some were unfazed by the event, there were others who saw it for what it really was, with indignation. The negative reaction of many people caused the Nazi party to be careful with their actions for the next year, making the intention of the book burnings and banning unclear for the next few years (Rose 9). In America, people’s reactions were different. The American Jewish Congress arranged protests against the anti-semitism occurring in Europe. In was the largest demonstration in New York City history up to that date, where 100,000 people marched (Holocaust Encyclopedia). Nearly all American news sources covered the book burning. Some columnists predicted Germany’s decline, while others saw it as senseless and ineffective. E.B. White, an essayist, joked, “We never burn books except to keep them out of the hands of the grand jury” (Holocaust Encyclopedia). He took it much more lightly than others. The public had different reactions to the book burnings and bannings, and some even foreshadowed the upcoming events.
After the May 10 book burning, many Jewish professionals saw what would be happening in the near future and took this as an opportunity to leave Germany. Mainly writers, artists, and doctors fled and tried to immigrate to the United States. Certain immigration

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