The Big Idea – Moving forwardPosted: February 10, 2017
My initial research on the dangerously obedient Nazi officer Adolf Eichmann has lead me down a fascinating path. After the first week of research I wanted to find more people like Eichmann, who were the middle men in some of the most horrific events in history. However, the most complex and plentiful examples came from other SS Officers. Men like Josef Mengele, Heinrich Himmler and Reinhard Heydrich were all high ranking Nazi officers that were heavily involved in the organisation and execution of the Holocaust.
And just like Eichmann, all of these men were raised in cultured and talented households of musicians and academics. They were successful in school, played instruments and sports and had personal hobbies and interests. However, once they joined the SS it all changed. They became sinister and heartless men who caused the death of millions of people. And from my research and the theories of others, it can be argued that these traits are a result of an incredibly strong nature of obedience that was instilled by Adolf Hitler.
Another scary part of Hitler’s Nazi Germany is the ‘Wehrmacht Oath’, or as its more commonly known, the ‘Hitler Oath’. The oath had to be taken by every German citizen and soldier, where they state – “I swear to God this sacred oath that to the Leader of the German Empire and people, Adolf Hitler, supreme commander of the armed forces, I shall render unconditional obedience and that as a brave soldier I shall at all times be prepared to give my life for this oath.” It’s this kind of obedient nationalism and harsh authority that has drawn me to this subject the most.
I am still brainstorming and generating ideas around what the final outcome is going to be, but I am pleased with the research that I have found so far. Just like my previous projects, I am trying to do as much research and planning before going straight to the design process in these bigger projects, and I think that my work is better for it.