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Mein Kampf Hardcover – 1999


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 694 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin; 20th edition (1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0395951054
  • ISBN-13: 978-0395951057
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (603 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #519,902 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The angry ranting of an obscure, small-party politician, the first volume of Mein Kampf was virtually ignored when it was originally published in 1925. Likewise the second volume, which appeared in 1926. The book details Hitler's childhood, the "betrayal" of Germany in World War I, the desire for revenge against France, the need for lebensraum for the German people, and the means by which the National Socialist party can gain power. It also includes Hitler's racist agenda and his glorification of the "Aryan" race. The few outside the Nazi party who read it dismissed it as nonsense, not believing that anyone could--or would--carry out its radical, terrorist programs. As Hitler and the Nazis gained power, first party members and then the general public were pressured to buy the book. By the time Hitler became chancellor of the Third Reich in 1933, the book stood atop the German bestseller lists. Had the book been taken seriously when it was first published, perhaps the 20th century would have been very different.

Beyond the anger, hatred, bigotry, and self-aggrandizing, Mein Kampf is saddled with tortured prose, meandering narrative, and tangled metaphors (one person was described as "a thorn in the eyes of venal officials"). That said, it is an incredibly important book. It is foolish to think that the Holocaust could not happen again, especially if World War II and its horrors are forgotten. As an Amazon.com reader has pointed out, "If you want to learn about why the Holocaust happened, you can't avoid reading the words of the man who was most responsible for it happening." Mein Kampf, therefore, must be read as a reminder that evil can all too easily grow. --Sunny Delaney

Review

A Message from the Anti-Defamation League: Mein Kampf was Hitler's blueprint for what later became his war for world domination and for the extermination of the Jews and others. Written eight years before he assumed power in Germany, the book lays it all out: his megalomania, his conspiratorial obsession with Jews and his lust for power. For all who claimed they didn't know, all they had to do was read Mein Kampf to know of Hitler's intentions.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

113 of 119 people found the following review helpful By Susanna Hutcheson TOP 500 REVIEWER on October 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover
There are four or five currently popular English translations of Mein Kampf. I'll say a few words about the translations. Then I'll say a few things about the book.

This translation, The Reynal & Hitchcock is my personal favorite. It was translated by a scholarly committee and is taken directly from the German. I consider it closest to the original and many people agree. There are, however, others who prefer the Murphy translation and yet others who claim the Manheim is superior.

The Reynal & Hitchcock has no negative comments about Hitler. Nor does it appear to endorse his words. On the other hand, the Manheim has a definite bias. I feel that the Reynal & Hitchcock is the most fair and true to the actual words of Hitler.

This book is a difficult read because the Germans don't seem to know what a period is. The sentences go on and on with only a comma now and then. But in the Reynal & Hitchcock you'll find unfamiliar words explained. The notes and annotations are absolutely wonderful.

I own the 1939 edition and love it. One other thing I'll say is this: The name of Henry Ford was taken out of Manheim. I'm not sure if it's in Murphy or not. But it is in Reynal & Hitchcock.

Now a few words about Mein Kampf -- the book. I assume if you're reading this review you already know about Mein Kampf and have perhaps read it or read part of it. But if not, perhaps a few words are in order.

Mein Kampf is an interesting look into the mind of Hitler and it is interesting how we can see some of the same characteristics running in numerous people in office today. If we don't know history, we're apt to repeat it.
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208 of 230 people found the following review helpful By L. E. Camp on March 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Don't believe the negative reviews... If you pass on this edition, you will truly miss out on a fantastic translation of Mein Kampf!

I have read the 1943 Manheim translation, the 1939 Murphy translation, the 1939 Reynal & Hitchcock translation and the 2009 Ford translation. All have their own particular merits, and all appeal to certain audiences. The Manheim appeals to the scholarly and is indeed a faithful, word-for-word translation of Mein Kampf. However, it is incomplete. Further, following it in places can be very confusing in the English language, and many people I know have simply put it down in frustration. It's obviously a scholar's edition, as the German-language footnotes attest.

The Reynal & Hitchcock edition is a better flowing edition than the Manheim, in my opinion, but has been out of print since 1943, when the Manheim was published by Houghton-Mifflin. Why? Because Houghton-Mifflin did not want to pay royalties to Reynal & Hitchcock for their translation, so Ralph Manheim was commissioned for a new translation, which is, in fact, clumsier than the original.

The Murphy edition is far shorter, a fairly easy read for those who speak/read British English and have a decent vocabulary. However, it is paraphrased - as Murphy read a paragraph and put it into his own words. Not Hitler's words, but in most places, true to the meaning. But in some places, he misses the point (as Ford's book about the MEIN KAMPF translation controversy points out). So if you want Hitler, you won't get it from Murphy...

Onto Ford's translation... The thing I like about this translation is that it strikes me as a true PEOPLE's EDITION of Mein Kampf. It is COMPLETE and TRUE to the original, but being a PEOPLE'S EDITION does NOT mean that it is dumbed-down.
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256 of 288 people found the following review helpful By Susanna Hutcheson TOP 500 REVIEWER on October 6, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While not an easy read, I rather enjoy this translation and find it quite useful. The good news is -- once you get into it, you find it's not all that difficult to read. You begin to understand the message and the translation.

James Murphy started the translation. Ford, president of Elite Minds, publisher of the book, says Murphy embellished it, left things out, added things, and used academic words that make it hard to read.

He says he has not changed any wording and he has left all mistakes as they were. He adds, and probably correctly, that much was lost in the translation and that it sounded more like Murphy and less like Hitler. Murphy wrote for the intellectual while Hitler spoke to the working class.

Little needs to be said about the words of Hitler. I enjoy reading Mein Kampf. That certainly is not an endorsement of the man or his movement. Mein Kampf is an interesting look into the mind of this man and it is interesting how we can see some of the same characteristics running in numerous people in office today. If we don't know history, we're apt to repeat it.

Indeed, Hitler might even have won a Nobel Peace Prize based on his promises and the excitement he created in people before they really got to know him had the prize been given in those days! Certainly such greats as JFK and Churchill gave him glowing compliments.

Why did people follow Hitler? Knowing what we do now, it's easy to think the German people were stupid. The truth is the country had suffered a severe punishing war and hyperinflation -- money was worthless. They needed a real leader.

Hitler promised everyone everything. He was just the "right" person for that particular time. If times had been different, he would not have risen to power in all likelihood.
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