Nazism

What was Joseph Goebbels’s secretary really like?

4 February 2017 9:00 am

As if on cue, The World At One on Monday (Radio 4) ended with a short (too short) interview with…

An inmate of Auschwitz in the early 1940s

A singular horror

28 January 2017 9:00 am

How did the Holocaust happen? What lessons can be learned from it? Philippe Sands wonders whether anything similar could happen again

‘The Four Elements’, before 1937, by Adolf Ziegler, which hung above Hitler’s fireplace

Was Nazi art really that bad?

14 January 2017 9:00 am

Bad men and bad politics don’t necessarily equal bad art. So perhaps it’s time to reassess Hitler’s taste in painting, says William Cook

Astrid Lindgren during the second world war. By 1945 she was suffering from depression and insomnia

Astrid Lindgren’s second world war diaries make for crisp, painful reading

22 October 2016 9:00 am

There’s a glorious scene in Astrid Lindgren’s first Pippi Longstocking book in which her fearless, freckled heroine strides to the…

The Frankfurt School was a place of fearsome seriousness

1 October 2016 9:00 am

One day in April 1969 Theodor Adorno began teaching a new course entitled ‘An Introduction to Dialectical Thinking’. Feel free,…

Radio 4’s dramatic disruption of Primo Levi’s The Periodic Table is unforgivable

23 July 2016 9:00 am

It was hard to believe that Monday morning’s introduction to the Italian writer Primo Levi on Radio 4 lasted for…

Making Nietzsche New

30 April 2016 9:00 am

Had you been down at Naumburg barracks early in March 1867, you might have seen a figure take a running…

Nietzsche's school jeremiad sounds oddly familiar

5 March 2016 9:00 am

When Friedrich Nietzsche was offered a professorship in classical philology at the university of Basel in 1869 he was so…

Nimoy and Shatner in ‘The Man Trap’, the first episode of Star Trek (September 1966)

Close encounters on the starship Enterprise

5 March 2016 9:00 am

For a show with a self-proclaimed ‘five-year mission’, Star Trek hasn’t done badly. Gene Roddenberry’s ‘Wagon train to the stars’…

Always prone to depression: David Astor c.1946

David Astor: the saintly, tormented man who remade the Observer

5 March 2016 9:00 am

Before embarking on this book, Jeremy Lewis was told by his friend Diana Athill that his subject, the newspaper editor…

Why are children in Guernsey extolling Islam to their parents?

27 February 2016 9:00 am

I have never been to the island of Guernsey. This is a large world and we have a finite amount…

Happy early days: Erika and Klaus in 1927

Was Klaus Mann all Thomas Mann's fault?

27 February 2016 9:00 am

Thomas Mann, despite strong homosexual emotions, had six children. The two eldest, Erika and Klaus, born in 1905 and 1906…

Marlene Dietrich, George Orwell and the rebirth of a nation

20 February 2016 9:00 am

The purpose of Lara Feigel’s book is to describe the ‘political mission of reconciliation and restoration’ in the devastated cities…

The SS deport Jews from the Warsaw ghetto

David Cesarani's final, fascinating, wrong-headed book

6 February 2016 9:00 am

David Cesarani, Research Professor of History at Royal Holloway University of London, died at the age of 58 on 25…

From top left: Lucian Freud, Rudolf Bing, Stefan Zweig, Walter Gropius, Rudolf Laban, Max Born, Kurt Schwitters, Friedrich Hayek, Fritz Busch, Frank Auerbach, Emeric Pressburger, Oskar Kokoschka

German refugees transformed British cultural life - but at a price

3 October 2015 9:00 am

German-speaking refugees dragged British culture into the 20th century. But that didn’t go down well in Stepney or Stevenage, says William Cook

What drove Europe into two world wars?

19 September 2015 8:00 am

Sir Ian Kershaw won his knight’s spurs as a historian with his much acclaimed two-volume biography of Hitler, Hubris and…

Hitler with the Goebbels family in the late 1930s

Joseph Goebbels: Hitler’s ‘little doctor’ was devoted unto death

9 May 2015 9:00 am

It is ironic that this weighty biography of Hitler’s evil genius of a propaganda minister is published on the day…

The face of evil: Irma Grese, one of the most hated of all camp guards, trained at Ravensbrück before moving to Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen. Survivors testified to her extreme sadism, including her use of trained, half-starved dogs to savage prisoners

Process of elimination: the horrors of Ravensbrück revealed

31 January 2015 9:00 am

Concentration camps in Nazi Germany were originally set up in 1933 to terrorise Hitler’s political enemies; as war drew near,…

Henry VIII, Edward VI, Charles I, George VI and George V

Game of thrones: five kings spanning five centuries launch a new series on royalty

3 January 2015 9:00 am

Nigel Jones reviews the first five titles to appear in a new series on British monarchs

‘Interior (Innenraum)’, 1981, by Anselm Kiefer

'I like vanished things': Anselm Kiefer on art, alchemy and his childhood

20 September 2014 9:00 am

Martin Gayford talks to a surprisingly jolly Anselm Kiefer about art and metamorphosis

Andrew Marr’s diary: Seeing shadows of Syria in Limousin’s ghost village

30 August 2014 9:00 am

No, no, no, you don’t want a house abroad — the paperwork, the taxes, the piping, the cost of the…

A romanticised portrait of Goethe by J.H.W. Tischbein

Germans see the best of their soul in Weimar. Everyone else, on the other hand..

30 August 2014 9:00 am

For centuries hailed as the home of poetry, music and liberalism, Weimar was ruthlessly exploited by the Nazis and later served as a showcase for communism, says Philip Hensher

I'm proud to say The Book Thief couldn't pull my heartstrings

1 March 2014 9:00 am

The Book Thief is based on Markus Zusak’s novel of the same name which, although written for young adults, appears…

Did Hollywood moguls really make a pact with Hitler?

23 November 2013 9:00 am

At the recent Austin Film Festival, at every ruminative panel or round-table discussion I attended, I slapped my copy of…

Death by Dior, by Terry Cooper - review

10 August 2013 9:00 am

This book may sound like it’s going to be about high fashion, but it’s actually about Nazism, satanism, incest and…