Modern Non-Fiction: The Theory and Practice of Hell, by Eugen Kogon

When I read Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago and Yevgenia Ginzburg’s Journey Into the Whirlwind, I gained the impression that the Soviets were even worse than the Nazis – that they were, at any rate, fully as bad as the Second World War Japanese in barbarism and depravity. I made a distinction between Second World War Germans and Japanese because the Nazis treated captured American soldiers, by and large, vastly better than did the Japanese. But this is not enough. Eugen Kogon’s book about the Nazi concentration camps – and about Buchenwald specifically, where he was a prisoner from 1939 until the end of the war – is a reminder that, in the race to the slimy bottom of bestiality, the Germans, Japanese and Soviets were all of a piece.

Kogon has a fascinating chapter on the psychology of the SS – the Exemplars of the Master Race. They were not simply psychotics – though there were plenty such: a certain Master Sergeant Sommer decorated his room with an illuminated skull and “at night would sometimes summon a victim from one of the cells and leisurely do away with him in the room. He would then place the body under his bed and fall asleep peacefully.”

But the average SS man cannot claim insanity as an excuse – Kogon tosses off the interesting observation that “unlimited quantities of liquor” were available to the men on the murder squads. Drinking quelled any residual sparks of humanity – the SS called this “beating the inner son of a bitch.”

The “inner son of a bitch” is more often called “the conscience” – which Hitler fascinatingly and remarkably called “a Jewish invention, a blemish like circumcision.”

The SS were not insane: they were extremely stupid. They were men who had failed at basic education and in society generally, and who often as not had petty (or serious) criminal pasts. General Intelligence Questions on the examination for promotion to SS sergeant included: “What is the difference between a child and a dwarf? Between a ladder and a stairway?” Knowing things like that made you an SS intellectual.

During the war, German typewriters had a special key for the letters “SS” in runic script.

The SS replaced Christianity with a pagan German mysticism; they had noble ancestries invented for them (lacking even the imagination to invent their own lies – “the heraldic devices of Himmler’s elite guard units were designed by prisoners and then entered in the official heraldic rolls…”). They were then given control over the lives of men who, by their very existence – by their continued survival – made the SS feel their inferiority, in intelligence, in spirit and in everything they did.

The inferiority complex of the German People would make a fascinating study – Shirer wrote in his Berlin Diary that Germans were distinguished by an inability to understand anything but a master-slave relationship among individuals and nations alike.

Today’s resurgent European anti-semitism is not fundamentally different. As long as the Jews continue to excel in everything – in education, science, literature, business, building democracies in the Middle East and especially in survival against all odds, which is the story of Israel and of the Jews – lesser, smaller, meaner people will continue to hate them for it.

Importance: 9/10

Engagingness: 9/10

Overall Goodness Rating (OGR): 9/10

The Theory and Practice of Hell, by Eugen Kogon.  Translation by Heinz Norden.  First published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Inc, 1950.  This edition 1982, 333 pages.

460 thoughts on “Modern Non-Fiction: The Theory and Practice of Hell, by Eugen Kogon

  1. Pingback: Buy generic viagra
  2. Pingback: cost of cialis
  3. Pingback: generic cialis
  4. Pingback: cialis 20
  5. Pingback: viagra for men
  6. Pingback: coupon for cialis
  7. Pingback: cialis 20mg
  8. Pingback: naltrexone price
  9. Pingback: cialis india
  10. Pingback: viagra substitute
  11. Pingback: viagra 50mg
  12. Pingback: cheap viagra
  13. Pingback: ed meds online
  14. Pingback: cialis online
  15. Pingback: levitra pill
  16. Pingback: play casino online
  17. Pingback: buy cialis 20mg
  18. Pingback: free viagra
  19. Pingback: short term loans
  20. Pingback: cash advance
  21. Pingback: viagra for sale
  22. Pingback: parx casino online
  23. Pingback: 5 mg cialis
  24. Pingback: Mybookie
  25. Pingback: buy cialis
  26. Pingback: cialis generic
  27. Pingback: cialis 5 mg
  28. Pingback: new cialis
  29. Pingback: free slots
  30. Pingback: casino slots
  31. Pingback: real casino
  32. Pingback: order viagra
  33. Pingback:
  34. Pingback: buy viagra au
  35. Pingback: buy cialis
  36. Pingback: cialis online usa
  37. Pingback: order Viagra 25 mg
  38. Pingback: buy viagra online
  39. Pingback: Cialis 10mg cheap
  40. Pingback: viagra 100mg
  41. Pingback: Cialis 40 mg uk
  42. Pingback: Cialis 10mg coupon
  43. Pingback: Cialis 20 mg pills
  44. Pingback: viagra buy
  45. Pingback: tadalafil 40mg uk
  46. Pingback: buy lexapro 5mg
  47. Pingback: buy actos 30mg
  48. Pingback: amaryl 4 mg online
  49. Pingback: cialis 20mg
  50. Pingback: avodart 0,5 mg usa
  51. Pingback: viagra generic
  52. Pingback: cardizem 60 mg nz
  53. Pingback:
  54. Pingback: how to buy celexa
  55. Pingback: cheapest cipro
  56. Pingback: casinos online
  57. Pingback: free slots
  58. Pingback: slot machine games
  59. Pingback: slots real money
  60. Pingback: autoinsurance
  61. Pingback: buy cialis online
  62. Pingback: cialis online
  63. Pingback: cialis online
  64. Pingback: payday loans texas
  65. Pingback: top payday loan
  66. Pingback: usa personal loans
  67. Pingback: buy cialis brand
  68. Pingback: buy levitra 10 mg
  69. Pingback: essay buy
  70. Pingback: buy essay papers
  71. Pingback: viagra for sale uk
  72. Pingback: buy cleocin 150 mg
  73. Pingback: cheap clonidine
  74. Pingback: cialis online
  75. Pingback: buy compazine
  76. Pingback: coumadin tablets
  77. Pingback: best essay service
  78. Pingback: thesis research
  79. Pingback: depakote 125mg usa
  80. Pingback: Low cost viagra
  81. Pingback: diltiazem nz
  82. Pingback: elavil 50 mg otc
  83. Pingback: erythromycin uk
  84. Pingback: etodolac uk
  85. Pingback: flomax 0,4mg nz
  86. Pingback: geodon for sale
  87. Pingback: cheapest hyzaar
  88. Pingback: cialis dose
  89. Pingback: buy cialis online
  90. Pingback: imodium 2 mg cheap
  91. Pingback: viagra doses
  92. Pingback: viagra connect usa
  93. Pingback: buy cialis
  94. Pingback: indocin usa
  95. Pingback: levaquin tablet
  96. Pingback: lopid 300mg otc
  97. Pingback: Diltiazem
  98. Pingback: canadian rx
  99. Pingback: cheapest pharmacy
  100. Pingback: how to buy mobic
  101. Pingback: order motrin
  102. Pingback: proscar cost
  103. Pingback: protonix 40mg otc
  104. Pingback: pulmicort tablet
  105. Pingback: reglan 10mg uk
  106. Pingback: buy retin-a cream
  107. Pingback: robaxin coupon
  108. Pingback: rogaine 5% price
  109. Pingback: cheapest seroquel
  110. Pingback: singulair cheap
  111. Pingback: spiriva 9mcg uk
  112. Pingback: toprol nz
  113. Pingback: valtrex generic
  114. Pingback: verapamil tablets
  115. Pingback: cost of zithromax
  116. Pingback: Website
  117. Pingback: zocor 5mg usa
  118. Pingback: zyloprim 100mg uk
  119. Pingback: zyvox tablet
  120. Pingback: sildenafil pills
  121. Pingback: furosemide pills
  122. Pingback: fexofenadine price
  123. Pingback: glimepiride 2mg uk
  124. Pingback: meclizine price
  125. Pingback: leflunomide coupon
  126. Pingback: atomoxetine otc
  127. Pingback: buy donepezil 5 mg
  128. Pingback: order irbesartan
  129. Pingback: olmesartan nz
  130. Pingback: buspirone coupon
  131. Pingback: cheap loratadine
  132. Pingback: order clozapine
  133. Pingback: köpä cialis
  134. Pingback: cheap warfarin
  135. Pingback: Cardizem
  136. Pingback: divalproex price
  137. Pingback: buy phenytoin
  138. Pingback: uk buy viagra
  139. Pingback: buy amitriptyline
  140. Pingback: cialis 5mg tablet
  141. Pingback: permethrin prices
  142. Pingback: 141genericExare
  143. Pingback: pfsdndsc
  144. Pingback: estradiol pills
  145. Pingback: etodolac coupon
  146. Pingback: how viagra
  147. Pingback: glipizide cheap
  148. Pingback: sumatriptan pills
  149. Pingback: cialis dene
  150. Pingback: loperamide tablet
  151. Pingback: cialis in spain
  152. Pingback: digoxin medication
  153. Pingback: lasix 40 mg iv
  154. Pingback: clomid headache
  155. Pingback: top essay writers
  156. Pingback: neurontin review
  157. Pingback: metformin fatigue
  158. Pingback: metformin 850mg
  159. Pingback: plaquenil blog
  160. Pingback: meds online
  161. Pingback: metformin 228