The destruction of Jewish Livelihood in Germany

Racist and nationalistic anti-Semitism was an essential component of National Socialist ideology. When the National Socialists took over government power in January 1933 this anti-Semitism became a characteristic feature of the development of the totalitarian state. It became one of the guiding principles of German politics.


Banner urging an anti-semitic boycott in Glowitz, 1933 (Bildarchiv Preu├čischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin)

The objective of this political system was to expel the Jewish population from German society. Before the National Socialists began to systematically murder European Jewry in the Second World War they had destroyed the economic basis of Jewish people's livelihood by arbitrary acts and ever more radical and discriminatory legislation.

They started with a boycott of Jewish businesses, medical practices and attorneys' offices on 1 April 1933. During the 1930s the authorities, security services and party organizations resorted to increasingly brutal measures - Jewish employees were dismissed from the civil service, they were stripped of their civic rights, Jewish businesses suffered as a result of peremptory boycotts and the mass media mounted anti-Semitic hate campaigns.

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