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Nazi Ideology and Victims of the Holocaust and Nazi Persecution

Dr. Meinecke spoke to North Carolina teachers at the Museum in November 2002. He presents this material at many of the Museum's teacher training programs on-site and around the nation. In addition to video of the actual workshop session, segments include historical and artifact photographs, text, and links to related sites within the Museum's website.

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The Quest for Racial Purity


The Nazis believed Germans were members of a “master race,” superior in mind and body to all other peoples. The Nazi state sought to foster this supposed “superiority” by preventing Germans from intermingling with “inferior” peoples, and encouraging the number of children born to “healthy” members of society while preventing the procreation of “inferior” types.

View the special focus page, Nazi Persecution of Persons with Disabilities

Workshop Video

  • “The group that most closely paralled the experience of Jews in Germany"

  • “The Great Devouring”

  • “The Nazi policy of euthanasia is the state deciding who was not a productive member of society, and the state killing them.”

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Supporting Media

  • Smoke rising from the crematorium of the Hartheim euthanasia facility. —Karl Schuhmann

  • Gypsy caravans in Poland —Archiwum Dokumentacji Mechanicznej

  • African-Germans: Propaganda photo from Hitler Youth film strip. Caption says: “The result! The loss of racial pride.” US Holocaust Memorial Museum

  • African-Germans: Group of Aryan children with one offspring of German and African (center). Library of Congress

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