Adolf Hitler on 'Causes of the Collapse', part 3

Published by carolyn on Tue, 2018-08-07 20:44

Continuing with passages from Mein Kampf, 2017 Thomas Dalton translation. See here.

Syphilis was a big problem in Germany at this time, before the use of penicillin to treat infections, which came only in 1942. Hitler spends some time in this long Chapter 10 discussing it and offering moral solutions. He blames prostitution and marriages based on financial considerations rather than love, which he calls “the Judaizing of our spiritual life and mammonizing of our mating instinct.” He recommends early marriage. He writes:


The sin against blood and race is the original sin in this world. It brings an end to every nation that commits it.


The attitude towards this one vital problem in pre-war Germany was most regrettable. What measures were taken to halt the infection of our youth in the large cities? What was done to put an end to the contamination and mammonization of our love lives? What was done to fight the resultant syphilization of our national body? […]

Instead of taking this problem lightly, the authorities should have realized that the fortunes or misfortunes of future generations depended on its solution. […]


[…] A war against syphilis means fighting against prostitution, against prejudice, against old-established customs, against current fashion, public opinion, and last but not least, against a false prudery in certain circles.

The first prerequisite to be fulfilled before the state can claim a moral right to fight against all these things is the facilitation of earlier marriages for the coming generations. Whatever way we view it, late marriages have the sanction of a custom that is, and will remain, a disgrace to humanity. It's a cursed institution, ill-suited to a being who likes to regard himself as in the 'image' of God.


Marriage is not an end in itself, but must serve a higher goal, which is to increase and maintain the species and race. … This being the case … early marriages should be the rule because only the young couple will still have the strength necessary for raising healthy offspring. Of course, early marriages cannot be made the rule without a whole series of social changes … He discusses the housing problem and the salary scale, both of which discourage early marriage.


First of all, our present educational system must establish a balance between mental instruction and physical training. The institution known today as Gymnasium is a positive insult to the Greek model. Our system of education entirely loses sight of the fact that, in the long run, a healthy mind can exist only in a healthy body. […] The … neglect of physical training necessarily leads to sexual thoughts in early youth.


Thus, in every branch of our education , the daily curriculum must occupy a boy's free time in useful development of his physical powers. He has no right in those years to loaf about, becoming a nuisance in public streets and cinemas. […] Our school system should also rid itself of the notion that bodily training is best left to the individual himself. There is no such thing as freedom to sin against posterity, and thus against the race.


[…] Our whole public life today may be compared to a hothouse for sexual ideas and incitements. A glance at the bill-of-fare provided by our cinemas, playhouses, and theaters suffices to prove that this is not the right food, especially for our youth. In shop windows and advertisements, the most vulgar means are used to attract public attention. Anyone who hasn't completely lost contact with adolescent yearnings will realize that this must cause great damage. This seductive and sensual atmosphere puts ideas into the heads of our youth that, at their age, should still be unknown to them. It is much, much worse today! We have lost that battle.

[Our contemporary youth] mature too early and are therefore old before their time. The law courts sometimes throw a distressing light on the spiritual life of our 14- and 15-year-olds. Who, then will be surprised to learn that syphilis claims its victims already at this age. [Today it is opiods and heroin] And isn't it deplorable to see the number of physically weak and intellectually spoiled young men , who have been introduced to the rites of marriage by the big-city whores? […]

Wilhelm Kriessmann, who grew up ia small village in Austria in the '20's and '30's, turned 19 in 1938, told me that even during the war if you had sex with a "nice" girl, you had better be prepared to marry her. So this did drive boys to prositutes ... or abstinance.

[H]alf measures are worthless. … It's a half-measure if incurables are given the opportunity of infecting one healthy person after another. This would be that kind of humanitarianism that allows a hundred to perish in order to avoid hurting one individual.

The demand that defective people be prevented from producing defective offspring is one that's based on the most reasonable grounds, and its proper fulfillment is the most humane act of mankind. Unhappy and undeserved suffering of millions will be spared, with the result that there will be a gradual improvement in national health. […]

Today, scientific advances have made it possible to detect a damaged fetus long before birth, so abortions are carried out without any objections from anyone. But at that time, these fetuses were born.


One of the most visible signs of decay in the old Reich was the slow decline of the cultural level. But by 'culture,' I don't mean that which is nowadays designated as 'civilization,' which, on the contrary, may rather be regarded as inimical to a truly elevated standard of thinking and living.

At the turn of the last century, a new artistic element began to make its appearance in our world. It was something that had been previously unknown and foreign to us. In former times, there were certainly offences against good taste; but these were mostly departures from the orthodox canons of art, and posterity could recognize a certain historical value in them. But the new products showed signs, not only of artistic aberration but of a destructive spiritual degeneration. Here, in the cultural sphere, the signs of the coming political collapse first became apparent.


If we study the course of our cultural life during the last 25 years, we will be astonished to note how far we have already gone in this process of regression. Everywhere we find the presence of those germs that give rise to tumorous growths that must sooner or later bring about the ruin of our culture. Here we find undoubted symptoms of a slowly decaying world. And woe to the nations that are no longer able to master this disease!


The saddest feature of our whole pre-war culture was not only that it was barren of any cultural or artistic creative force, but the hatred with which the memory of the greater past was besmirched and effaced. Around the end of the last century, people were less interested in producing new significant works of their own—particularly in the fields of dramatic art and literature—than in defaming the best works of the past, and in presenting them as inferior and outdated: as if this period of disgraceful decadence had the capacity to produce anything of superior quality.

[…] It threw the healthy artistic feeling into utter confusion, thus spiritually preparing the way for political Bolshevism.

In this connection, attention must be drawn once again to the lack of courage displayed by one section of our people, namely, by those who, in virtue of their education and position, should have been obligated to resist this cultural disgrace. But they failed to offer serious resistance, and surrendered to what they considered the inevitable. This abdication was due to a fear of the ruckus that would be raised by the apostles of Bolshevist art, who viciously attacked anyone not ready to acknowledge them as the crown of creation, and who strangled all opposition by calling it philistine and backward. People trembled in fear lest these half-wits and swindlers accuse them of lacking in artistic appreciation—[...]  This is so true that it is still going on today.


Still another critical symptom has to be considered.

In the course of the 19th century, our towns and cities began to lose their character as centers of civilization, and became more and more centers of habitation. In our great modern cities, the proletarian man doesn't show much attachment to the place where he lives. This feeling results from the fact that his town is nothing but an accidental abode […] partly due to the frequent change of residence that's forced upon him by social conditions; there's no time to form a bond to the place in which he lives. And yet another reason lies in the cultural barrenness and superficiality of our present-day cities.


But the following is the essential point: Our great modern cities have no outstanding monuments that dominate the city, ones that could be pointed to as symbols of a whole epoch. Yet almost every ancient town had a monument erected to its glory. It wasn't in private dwellings that the characteristic art of ancient cities was displayed, but in the public monuments, which were not meant to have a transitory interest but an enduring one.


The community per se is not the dominant characteristic of our contemporary cities, and therefore it's no surprise that the community finds itself architecturally underrepresented. Thus we must eventually arrive at a state of desolation—with the practical effect that the individual citizen is totally indifferent to the fate of his city.

I was surprised and pleased to find these architectural ideas expressed by Hitler in 1925 already; they are identical to what he discussed with Hermann Giesler, Albert Speer and others from 1938 on when he was able to put his attention on the renovation of Germany's main city centers. See the book The Artist Within the Warlord, and some photographs of the models are here.

To be continued ...


Mein Kampf, MKVolI