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© 2018

National Socialism and German Discourse

Unquiet Voices

Book

About this book

Introduction

‘In this wide-ranging, profoundly serious, yet accessibly written study W J Dodd traces the origins, realities, and legacies of Nazism in German discourse history, focusing impressively on the ‘unquiet voices’ of the time and their contribution to a modern understanding of the politics of language use. This important book deserves to find many readers not only in the English-speaking world, but also in Germany!’

Jürgen Schiewe, Institute of German Philology, University of Greifswald, Germany

In this discourse history, W J Dodd analyses the ‘unquiet voices’ of opponents whose contemporary critiques of Nazism, from positions of territorial and inner exile, focused on the ‘language of Nazism’. Individual chapters review ‘precursor’ discourses; Nazi public discourse from 1933 to 1945; the testimonies of ‘unquiet voices’ abroad, and in private and published texts in the ‘Reich’; attempts to ‘denazify the language’ (1945-49), and the legacies of the Nazi past in a retrospective discourse of ‘coming to terms’ with the Nazi past. In the period from 1945, the book focuses on contestations of ‘tainted language’ and instrumentalizations of the Nazi past, and the persistence of linguistic taboos in contemporary German usage. Accessibly written, with English translations provided throughout, this book will provide an invaluable resource for scholars of discourse analysis, sociolinguistics, and German history and culture; as well as readers with a general interest in language and politics.

W J Dodd is Emeritus Professor of Modern German Studies at the University of Birmingham, UK. His research in this area has been recognized by a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship and a Senior Fellowship of the Alfried Krupp Institute for Advanced Study, Germany.

Keywords

Political linguistics Historical linguistics Nazism World War II Anti-Fascism Discourse History National Socialism political discourse analysis National Socialist Discourse German linguistics Nationhood Third Reich Nazi language political language criticism 'pragmatized’ semantics

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Modern LanguagesUniversity of BirminghamBirminghamUnited Kingdom

About the authors

W J Dodd is Emeritus Professor of Modern German Studies at the University of Birmingham,
UK. His research in this area has been recognized by a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship
and a Senior Fellowship of the Alfried Krupp Institute for Advanced Study, Germany.

Bibliographic information

Reviews

“Jargon-free and accessibly written, with translations provided throughout, a careful glossary of terms, and a targeted bibliography following each chapter, it strikes just the right balance between comprehensive overview and penetrating digest, and will appeal as much to an interested non-specialist reader as a specialist. … Dodd provides the perfect amount to encourage further independent research and reading.” (Kirstin Gwyer, Modern Language Review, Vol. 114 (3), July, 2019)


“Dodd has written an important book. It should be on any reading list of key works on German history and thought over the last two centuries.” (Joachim Whaley, Journal of European studies, Vol. 48 (3-4), November, 2018) ​