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Hitler's Body And The Body Politic

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I study ideology as if manifest content of a dream, seeking to comprehend

the ideology's latent content or unconscious meaning. I observe recurring

images and metaphors within ideological productions. Through systematic

analysis of these recurring images and metaphors, it is possible to reveal

the deep structure of an ideology.

Ideologies are social constructions. However, why do they exist? What is the

nature of the psychic work that they perform? I suggest that ideologies

constitute vehicles for working through deep-rooted psychological issues.

Hitler's ideology, for example, represented the medium through which Hitler

attempted to come to terms with the problem of death.

Hitler's project was to create a people so closely united-fused

together--that they could think, feel and act as a single organism. Such a

body politic would be indestructible, not only in the present but in the

future as well. Hitler and the Nazis devoted their lives toward creating an

organism that would be different from all other organisms. They aspired to

fashion a body (politic) that was so healthy and powerful that it would not

succumb to death.

The Jew in Hitler's ideology was a force working to destroy Germany.

National Socialism was the attempt to come to terms with this destructive

force. The "Final Solution"--concluding phase of Hitler's struggle against

death-represented a form of radical surgery whose purpose was to "remove"

Germany's death instinct, quash the process of disintegration.


The complete paper by Richard A. Koenigsberg is available for the

first time as an on-line publication.




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