Richard Weikart, history professor at the University of California Stanislaus, has just published Hitler’s Ethic: The Nazi Pursuit of Evolutionary Progress (Palgrave Macmillan April 2011)
In this book, Weikart helps unlock the mystery of Hitler’s evil by vividly demonstrating the surprising conclusion that Hitler’s immorality flowed from a coherent ethic. Hitler was inspired by evolutionary ethics to pursue the utopian project of biologically improving the human race. This ethic underlay or influenced almost every major feature of Nazi policy: eugenics (i.e., measures to improve human heredity, including compulsory sterilization), euthanasia, racism, population expansion, offensive warfare, and racial extermination.
For your enjoyment:
You can look inside Hitler’s Ethic.
Podcast with Weikart on this book here.
Here’s Larry Arnhart’s review and here’s Weikart’s response.
Some Weikart essays
“Progress through Racial Extermination: Social Darwinism, Eugenics, and Pacifism in Germany, 1860-1918,” German Studies Review 26 (2003): 273-94.
“Darwinism and Death: Devaluing Human Life in Germany, 1860-1920,” Journal of the History of Ideas 63 (2002): 323-344.
“Laissez-Faire Social Darwinism and Individualist Competition in Darwin and Huxley,” The European Legacy 3 (1998): 17-30.