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Nonfiction: Military History / World War II
Unabridged   14 hour(s)
Publication date: 09/25/2012


On Fighting, Killing, and Dying

Available from major retailers or BUY FROM AMAZON
Audio CD ISBN:9781611749052
Digital Download ISBN:9781611749069


A trove of previously unpublished, transcribed conversations among German POWs—secretly recorded by the Allies—reveals the extent of their brutality and changes our understanding of the mind-set of the German soldier during World War II.

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Product Description

On a visit to the British National Archive in 2001, Sonke Neitzel made a remarkable discovery: reams of meticulously transcribed conversations among German POWs that had been covertly recorded and recently declassified. Neitzel would later find another collection of transcriptions, twice as extensive, in the National Archive in Washington, D.C. These were discoveries that would provide a unique and profoundly important window into the true mentality of the soldiers in the Wehrmacht, the Luftwaffe, the German navy, and the military in general—almost all of whom had insisted on their own honorable behavior during the war.

Collaborating with renowned social psychologist Harald Welzer, Neitzel examines these conversations—and the casual, pitiless brutality omnipresent in them—from a historical and psychological perspective, and in reconstructing the frameworks and situations behind these conversations, they have created a powerful narrative of wartime experience.


“Celebrated narrator Simon Prebble does a masterly job solemnly conveying this powerful, dramatic material. . . . Essential for university history and military/World War II research collections.”
      —Library Journal

“Unique—and essential to any understanding of German mentalités in the Hitler era.”

“A powerful and often wrenching approach to the World War II experience.”
      —Library Journal

Author Bio

SONKE NEITZEL is a professor of Modern History at the University of Glasgow. He has previously taught modern history at the University of Mainz and has also held posts at the universities of Karlsruhe, Bern, and Saarbrucken. He is currently editor of the journal German History in the Twentieth Century.

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