Defense Date

1997

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

History

First Advisor

Dr. Joseph W. Bendersky

Abstract

This study examines the interconnection between the ideas and political activities of Reinhard Hoehn during the Weimar and Nazi Eras. In particular, Hoehn's political writings, which are closely analyzed, indicate a continuing commitment to the ideals of the Conservative Revolution through his changes in political affiliations. It serves as a case study of the much debated relationship between the Conservative Revolution and Nazism.While developing as a radical right-wing Weimar intellectual, Hoehn joined a succession of Revolutionary Conservative Kampfbuende. His political writings and affiliations showed a commitment to the destruction of liberal conceptions in politics, sociology, and legal theory. His ultimate objective was the establishment of Volksgemeinschaft in Germany. When by 1931 his hopes for achieving these goals through the conservative Jungdeutche Orden ended, he began working for the SS.During the Third Reich, Hoehn eventually served as a legal advisor to Heinrich Himmler and as a head of Zentralabteilung II/2 of the Sicherheitsdienst (SS Security Service), which investigated "German Spheres of Life." He also wrote considerably during the Third Reich on both German law and international relations. His theories revealed a preoccupation with eliminating from law the concept of sovereignty and individualism as continuing vestiges of absolutism and liberalism. This belief led Hoehn to attempt to eliminate the 'individual personalities' of both the state and the Nazi Party. He thus deviated from Nazi ideologues and leaders on these significant matters, while he made compromises with the SS on issues of race and Himmler's political interests. However, an examination of Hoehn's writings and activities in Weimar and the Third Reich shows a dedication to an idealism that was in part distinct from Nazi orthodoxy, as well as a political realism in the sense that he knew his ideals were futile without the political backing of the SS.

Rights

© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

June 2008

Included in

History Commons

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