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How much is Nazism and the Nazi Regime reflected by Voldemort and the Death Eaters in the 'Harry Potter' books?

"I wanted Harry to leave our world and find exactly the same problems in the wizarding world. So you have the intent to impose a hierarchy, you have bigotry, and this notion of purity... So yeah that follows a parallel [to Nazism]." - JK Rowling

James Matthews

on 27 April 2012

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Transcript of How much is Nazism and the Nazi Regime reflected by Voldemort and the Death Eaters in the 'Harry Potter' books?

How much is Nazism and the Nazi Regime reflected by Voldemort and the Death Eaters in the 'Harry Potter' books? by James Matthews The Basic Story "I wanted Harry to leave our world and find exactly the same problems in the wizarding world. So you have the intent to impose a hierarchy, you have bigotry, and this notion of purity, which is this great fallacy, but it crops up all over the world. People like to think themselves superior and that if they can pride themselves in nothing else they can pride themselves on perceived purity. So yeah that follows a parallel [to Nazism]. It wasn't really exclusively that. I think you can see in the Ministry even before it's taken over, there are parallels to regimes we all know and love.” – JK Rowling The Potter books in general are a prolonged argument for tolerance, a prolonged plea for an end to bigotry, and I think it one of the reasons that some people don't like the books, but I think that's it's a very healthy message to pass on to younger people that you should question authority and you should not assume that the establishment or the press tells you all of the truth.” – JK Rowling The Harry Potter Books Over 450 million copies worldwide
Harry Potter is the world's 2nd best selling book series (second only to the Bible)
JK Rowling first came up with the with the concept on the train to Manchester in 1990
'Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone' was first published in 1997
The Harry Potter World (pre-Voldemort) Clear society and community
Distinct political and diciplinitary system
Popular Culture
Class Expectations
'Wizard Lifestyle'
First Noticable Flaws Slavery and preducice
Major flaws in the law
Influence of individuals on the Ministry
Black market of illegal items
Negative influence of role-models

Racist insults
Attacks on individuals because of their race
In Conclusion... Voldemort and Hitler - What do they have in common?
The reader experiencing the complexity of the world created by JK Rowling will get an insight into the workings of the Wizarding World.
Penetrate nations consciousness - Propaganda and education.
World in the Harry Potter books has a large amount of influence from or links to this real world and - not the perfect fantasy world
“You might assume that the above list [of the activities of the Ministry of Magic] is the work of some despotic Central African Nation, but it is actually the product of the Ministry of Magic, the magicians’ government…” - Professor Benjamin H Barton

There is much more to be said on this topic...
“Voldemort-as-Hitler is something of a cliché. Both of them have come to represent evil, as an abstract easy-to-hate concept, and drawing parallels is almost too easy.” - emmy668 on Harry Potter Fansite 'MuggleNet' Control over their respective countries
"Leadership Monopoly" (Ian Kershaw)
Voldemort had contol over Thicknesse through use of the Imperius Curse - "His Puppet" (Remus Lupin)
Voldemort's Rise to Power Gained a bad public image during
his attempted rise to power in the 70s
Infiltration of the already corrupted Ministry
Official statement released detailed the old Minster’s (Rufus Scrimgeour) resignation and the new Minister’s (Pius Thicknesse) appointment
Fear factor in place - No-one spoke out
Hitler's Rise to Power Manipulated the Political System of
the Weimar Republic
Support in the existing government
Propaganda - "The Hitler Myth"
The Hitler Myth “The adulation [praise] of Hitler by millions of Germans who might otherwise have been only marginally committed to Nazism meant that the person of the Fuhürer, as the focal point of basic consensus, formed a crucial integrity force in the Nazi system of rule” - Ian Kershaw “Powerful propaganda machinery headed Goebbels”
(John Hite and Chris Hinton)

An estimated 90% of Germans admired him
Voldemort “clever, handsome boy who was once Head Boy”
Albus Dumbledore

He used this to his advantage to obtain things he wanted, both information and physical objects, and to make things go his way

By not revealing himself, people didn’t have to admit to themselves that Voldemort was in power, which made them feel safer Flaw of the Hitler Myth “The day on which Hitler started to believe his own myth marked in a sense the beginning of the end of the Third Reich”
Ian kershaw

Voldemort too believed his views were correct, and his downfall was implemented by his refusal to accept that his ideals and theories on the laws of magic were incorrect. The Perfect Race The Aryan Race
The ‘Master Race’ created by God and it is a sin to mix the blood of an Aryan with others.

Pure Blood
“are rather obsessed with staying pure” - glamourousgeek on Harry potter fansite 'HPL'
Blood-Traitors’, ‘Mudwallowers’ or even ‘Dunglickers’
Dealing with Undesirables 1942 - Final Solution first implemented by Nazis
1943 - Chamber of Secrets first opened by Riddle

Riddle grew up in 1930's and 1940's Britain
Chamber of Secrets also opened in 1992

Chamber of Secrets 1000 years prior to the events of the story
Sole purpose of this was to murder those of whom he did not deem pure
Salazar Slytherin 'Noble Ancestor'
“Slytherin, according to the legend, sealed the Chamber of Secrets… the Heir alone would be able to unseal the Chamber… and is it to purge… all those who were unworthy to study magic” - Minerva McGonagall Anti - Semitism Anti-Semitism was also not a new idea either.

The earliest recorded record of Jewish Persecution in in Alexandria in the 3rd century BC
“We do not like the Jews as a Rule: it is therefore not easy for us to apply to them as well as the general love of humankind”
Protestant Theologian
Minority Groups Half-Bloods and many Non-Aryans were accepted
“people’s community of healthy, vigorous Aryans working for the good of the nation” - Volksgemeinschaft

Not conform to the set norms of the national
Political Opponants
Threatened the 'Gene Pool'
“I saw one [Nazi Blood Chart] in the Holocaust Museum in Washington when I had already devised the 'pure-blood', 'half-blood' and 'Muggle-Born' definitions, and was chilled to see that the Nazis used precisely the same warped logic as the Death Eaters. A single Jewish grandparent 'polluted' the blood, according to their propaganda” - JK Rowling Azkaban Azkaban had always been the wizard gaol

Contraversal Use

Previous prisoneres released or imperioused (e.g. Shunpike)

Muggle-Borns and Political Opponants

Dementors literally drained happiness and induced
despair ("Some go mad, others simply despair and die”)

Those not lucky enough to be imprisoned
were killed or given the Dementor's Kiss
Concentration Camps Work Camps for Prisoners

Undesirables and Opponants imprisoned

Forced to carry out laborious tasks and had a lifestyle in which they
found no quality of life

Those unfit to work were exterminated in the Gas Chambers
(Fear factor)

Located after a “surprisingly pretty trek through lush Polish forests
and meadows strewn with wildflowers and picturesque
villages” - Julie Mack .

Azkaban was located in the middle of the North Sea Role of the Dictators Voldemort and Hitler encouraged and approved these

Heinrich Himmler had most of the say in the concentration camps
and final solution

Dolores Umbridge was head of the Muggle-Born Regestration
Commision and appeared to have a large amount of free reign

Both charged with their offences at the end of the war
Opposition to the Regime Anne Frank & Dean Thomas I regard our hiding as a dangerous adventure, romantic and interesting at the same time.” - Anne Frank Unlike Harry, Dean Thomas had no Voldemort defeating quest to embark
on - just a teenager on the run from the regime.

He too had a dangerous adventure and his romantic feelings were touched upon

Proud of what they were - didn't give up hope

In hiding with a group of friends Dirk Cresswell In Hiding with Dean

Attempted at first to co-oporate with Death Eaters

Fake Family Tree - Similar to some Jews

Andromeda Tonks Dean and Dirk were also traveling with a
man named Ted Tonks

Andromeda Tonks (his wife) was siter to two
Death Eaters

Allied to Order of the Phoenix despite family connections

Jessica Mitford was a public fighter of Nazism
and fascism

Her sisters were Influential
Nazi Supporters
Other Opposition “Keep quiet or you’ll end up in Dachau" "they are scared to speak out, in case their
suspicions are true and their family is targeted" Kingsely Shacklebolt 20th July (Valkyrie) Dealing with Opposition In all those cases bar one, those in opposition were caught

Concentration Camp/Azkaban

Gestapo - 'Secret Police'
Snatchers- “gangs trying to earn Gold by rounding up Muggle-Borns and blood traitors”
Propaganda How much were the people to blame?

Hitler Myth
Follow Nazi Ideals - Aryan Superiority and Anti -Semitism
“We do not like the Jews as a Rule: it is therefore not easy for us to apply to them as well as the general love of humankind” - Protestant theologian from Nazi Germany
“Nazi anti-Semitism did not merely represent a revival or continuation of earlier Christian attitudes but drew extensively or contemporary radical science for its authority and legitimacy” - Mark Mazower

Ideals already in existance
Propaganda How much were the people to blame?

Mud-Blood prejudice already ingrained in society
As it was only in the minority of people's minds, Death Eaters orged scientific evidence to convince people to agree with their ideology.
“Recent research undertaken by the Department of Mysteries” - people were more inclined to believe it

Attempted to bring 'Undesireable Number One' Harry in for questioning about the 'Old Hero' Dumbledore's Death
Control of the Media WWN
Daily Prophet

Reich Association of the German Press and the Press Agency
Reich Radio Company

Quibbler and Potterwatch
Pirate Radio

Education is an integral part of childhood as well as the place children learn about life
Full transcript