Publisher Bringing 'Mein Kampf' Back To German Readers

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A British publisher wants to make parts of 'Mein Kampf' available to Germany

via TVNZ:

A British publisher wants to bring Mein Kampf back to the German people. 

The controversial text is banned in German bookstores, and only available in that country for the purposes of academic research. But Peter McGee, head of London-based publishing firm Albertas Ltd, said he will print three 16-page extracts from the book, along with critical commentary.

They'll be published later this month as part of the company's existing weekly publication, Zeitungszeugen, or Newspaper, with a print run of 100,000 each. They'll be sold at newspaper kiosks.

The state of Bavaria, which owns the copyright to the book, is considering legal action to block it. 

Germans are quite sensitive about Mein Kampf, the autobiography of Adolph Hitler, which outlines his vision for racial supremacy and his plan to seize areas in eastern Europe to provide living space for the "master race."   

But McGee told Reuters: 

It is a sensitive subject in Germany but the incredible thing is most Germans don't have access to Mein Kampf because it has this taboo, this 'black magic' surrounding it. We want Mein Kampf to be accessible so people can see it for what it is, and then discard it. Once exposed, it can be consigned to the dustbin of literature.

This raises several interesting questions. Does a prohibition of the book run the risk of creating a mystique around it?

And is it fair for an outsider to determine whether the book should be available in Germany, as the history is so controversial, and so personal to the German people?

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Tish77's picture
Tish77 from Central Qld, Australia is reading something different everytime I log in... Currently The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank January 17, 2012 - 1:37pm

I recently bought Mein Kampf and though I'm only in his younger years, it has a weird tone. I thought it would be fire and brimstone, anti-semitic rants and nonsense. What I found was quite light (I'm 100% sure it gets darker as I progress). It's an autobiography like any other you may find, it just hapens to be that of Hitler. It is an important tool in learning the mistakes of the past, a guide on how to spot a despotic meglomaniac.
A ban is never good, it glorifies it and crates myths - access to controversial texts often makes it boring for people.
Not being German, I have no idea how their national identity continues to be tied this man who died nearly 70 years ago, but not dealing with it could hardly be an effective strategy.
In Australia, we have a very strong focus on teaching the injustices of the past white oppressors on the Indigenous Australians. Most of it is shameful, voilent and still very recent - but we have to expose it, not only to learn from it but to identify with a new mentality that does not embrace this past.