Germans Defying Hitler by Peter B. Clark


While most Germans revered Hitler, many did not. Germans Defying Hitler provides gripping descriptions of their resistance to the Nazi regime. Among the best known are Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg and the siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl, but there were many others who came from all segments of German society, including factory workers, members of the intelligentsia, government officials, church leaders, and military officers. Particular attention is given to the opposition to Hitler by working-class Social Democrats and Communists. Resistance activity included the production and distribution of thousands of anti-Nazi leaflets, assassination attempts, and helping Jews escape deportation to death camps. A group of conservatives and military officers planned a coup already in 1938 and continued efforts to topple Hitler through mid-1944. The Nazis responded savagely: thousands were imprisoned and sent to concentration camps, many were tortured, and large numbers executed. Thus many Germans had the inner moral compass which gave them the courage to confront the Nazi terror. While ultimately unsuccessful, these Germans at least acted rather than remained quiescent and often paid the ultimate price for defying Hitler.

Peter B. Clark graduated from Reed College in 1963, majoring in philosophy, and received a PhD in economics from MIT in 1967. He taught economics at Duke University, worked at the Federal Reserve Board in Washington, and retired in 2004 as a Senior Advisor from the International Monetary Fund. During his career as an economist, he published widely ln his field. His interests shifted to recent German history, becoming fluent in German and visiting Germany many times. He published The Death of East Prussia: War and Revenge in Germany’s Easternmost Province in 2013. Germans Defying Hitler – The Many Faces of Resistance is his second non-economics book. 

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