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The National Socialist German Workers' Party (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, abbreviated NSDAP), commonly known in English as the Nazi Party (from the German Nazi, abbreviated from the pronunciation of Nationalsozialist[4]), was a political party in Germany between 1919 and 1945. It was known as the German Workers' Party (DAP) prior to a change of name in 1920.

The party's last leader, Adolf Hitler, was appointed Chancellor of Germany by president Paul von Hindenburg in 1933. Hitler rapidly established a totalitarian regime[5][6][7][8] known as the Third Reich.

Nazi ideology stressed the failures of laissez-faire capitalism, communism, economic liberalism, and democracy; advocated Positive Christianity and Fascism; supported the "racial purity of the German people" and that of other Northwestern Europeans; and claimed itself as the protector of Germany from Jewish influence and corruption. The Nazis persecuted those they perceived as either race enemies or Lebensunwertes Leben, that is "life unworthy of living". This included Jews, Slavs, Roma, and so-called "Mischlinge" along with Communists, homosexuals, the mentally and physically disabled, and others. The persecution reached its climax when the party and the German state which it controlled organized the systematic murder of approximately six million Jews and six million other people from the other targeted groups, in what has become known as the Holocaust. Hitler's desire to build a German empire through expansionist policies led to the outbreak of World War II in Europe.[citation needed]


  1. Fritzsche, Peter. 1998. Germans into Nazis. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press; Eatwell, Roger, Fascism, A History, Viking/Penguin, 1996, pp.xvii–xxiv, 21, 26–31, 114–140, 352. Griffin, Roger. 2000. "Revolution from the Right: Fascism," chapter in David Parker (ed.) Revolutions and the Revolutionary Tradition in the West 1560–1991, Routledge, London.
  2. Blum, George, The Rise of Fascism in Europe (Greenwood Press, 1998), p.9
  3. Nazi, New Oxford American Dictionary, 2nd ed., Oxford University Press Inc., 2005.
  4. Online Etymology Dictionary. URL accessed on 2010-11-12.
  5. Arendt, Hannah. The Origins of Totalitarianism. London; New York; San Diego:Harvest Book. Pp. 306
  6. Curtis, Michael. 1979 Totalitarianism. New Brunswick (US); London: Transactions Publishers. Pp. 36
  7. Burch, Betty Brand. 1964 Dictatorship and Totalitarianism: Selected Readings. Pp. 58
  8. Bruhn, Jodi; Hans Maier. 2004. Totalitarianism and Political Religions: Concepts for the Comparison of Dictatorships. Routledge: Oxon (U.K.); New York. Pp. 32.
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