Document Actions

You are here: FRIAS Events Humanities and Social … HUMSS - Adam Knowles

HUMSS - Adam Knowles

Categories of Complicity: Philosophy under National Socialism
When Jun 14, 2021
from 03:00 PM to 04:00 PM
Where Zoom-Meeting
Contact Name
Attendees Universitätsoffen / open to university members
Add event to calendar vCal

Categories of Complicity: Philosophy under National Socialism


How did the discipline of philosophy contribute to the imperial, racial and pedagogical projects of National Socialism? What were the instrumental contributions of individual philosophers in their professional capacities as writers, educators, university administrators and officials in various ministries of the Reich? Leaving aside the narrower question of who was a Nazi, this paper seeks to understand how philosophers made themselves useful to National Socialism by examining internal surveillance documents to reconstruct how the regime assessed the ideological affinities, political reliability and pragmatic usefulness of university philosophers. Through a critical analysis of the academic and bureaucratic structures in the Nazi era, the paper shows how there was high degree of continuity amongst the personnel and within the basic research agenda of the discipline after 1945, leaving in place a compromised discipline unwilling to subject itself to a rigorous process of denazification.