Anti-Semitic Children’s Books from the Third Reich

Of about 100,000 Anti-Semitic children’s books printed during the Third Reich, a few copies remain. Elvira Bauer, an 18-year-old art student, illustrated “Trust No Fox on his Green Heath And No Jew on his Oath” — a sad, shocking example of propaganda from someone so young. The title comes from a phrase by Martin Luther, whose anti-Jewish remarks were gleefully quoted by the Nazis. 

 

Exercpts are from this website: http://www.calvin.edu/academic/cas/gpa/fuchs.htm

[Page copyright © 2003 by Randall Bytwerk. No unauthorized reproduction. My e-mail address is available on theFAQ page.]

At the creation of the world
The Lord God conceived the races:
Red Indians, Negroes, and Chinese,
And Jew, too, the rotten crew.
And we were also on the scene:
We Germans midst this motley medley-
He gave them all a piece of earth
To work with the sweat of their brow.

Fox book illustration

The German is a proud young man,
Able to work and able to fight.
Because he is a fine big chap,
For danger does not care a rap,
The Jew has always hated him!

Fox book illustration

What a creature is the Jew.
Not even his own women he likes.
To share himself a German wife
He thinks just cute. You bet your life!
Look at Jew and girl right here:
‘Tis sure he can’t be thought her peer!
Compare him with this German Frau.
He cuts a pitiable figure now!
I would the Jew had sense to own
He’d best leave German girls alone. 
Try his own “kalle” instead.

 

“We do not buy from Jewish shops!”
Says the mother to the child.
“ ‘Tis only German goods we buy;
Remember that, my darling.”
German women should only buy
What’s been made by German hands,
By German industry and strength.
That’s why we only go
To those stores with German goods,
Here also we save more,
For their wares are cheap and good.
From Jews you get bad value!
Hence take note of mother’s words,
Be sure you never buy from Jews.

 

The Führer’s YouthThe boys who are true Germans
To Hitler’s Youth belong.
They want to live for their Führer,
Their eyes are fixed on the future.
Bigger and stronger they have become.
The German heritage is theirs.
The great and sacred Fatherland
Stands today as it ever stood.
From this picture may be seen,
Hitler Youth in splendid mien,
From smallest to the biggest boy.
All are husky, tough, and strong.
They love their German Führer
And God in Heaven they fear.
But the Jews they must despise!
They’re not like these boys,
So Jews must just give way!

Okay, I’ve had enough.

When children are indoctrinated this way from infancy, when the penalty of following one’s conscience instead of the law is to be arrested, tortured and killed, I try not to judge the Germans with the contempt and rage I feel on seeing history books, documentaries, Holocaust survivors, and books like this one.

It’s hard. Hating the Germans is so much easier than seeing that the capacity for evil is latent in all of us. Living in enlightened times, we judge the ignorant and the misinformed and pride ourselves in thinking we would sooner die than commit such evil ourselves. I hope it’s true. Put to the test, I’d rather die than lie and harm someone just to spare my children a worse fate. Depose all the world’s versions of Nazis and tyrants who would force us to evil. Fight for what is right.

Catholicism is filled with martyrs who chose to die rather than violate their moral convictions. Seven brothers die one by one in the Old Testament, tongues cut out, each in sight of the remaining brothers, until the last one is dead. I have never admired or been inspired by that tale. I’d die rather than set fire to foxes the way Samson did (with no apparent disdain from O.T. authors), but I’d never die over Fish on Friday or some other such dogma.

Meanwhile, I still try to reconcile or “embrace” the German in my blood. In college, I was struck hard by Frank Norris saying that in the German blood of his hero, McTeague, there “ran the foul stream of hereditary evil, like a sewer. The vices and sins of his father and his father’s father…”

If evil is encoded in our DNA, it’s in everyone’s, not just the German’s. And that’s all I care to say about that, for now.

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About carolkean

novelist, reviewer, editor, book critic for Liberty Island and Perihelion Science Fiction; native prairie/guerilla gardener; champion of liberty, indie authors & underdogs; one of the top two reviewers in Editors &Preditors Poll 2015; Amazon Vine, NetGalley Top Reviewer
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