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The Nazi Olympics: Berlin 1936 Hardcover – April 1, 2000


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Hardcover: 132 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown; 1st edition (April 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316070866
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316070867
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 8.8 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,563,656 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Published in conjunction with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, this penetrating volume takes a topic dear to many young readers--sports--and uses it to spotlight events leading to WWII. Bachrach (Tell Them We Remember: The Story of the Holocaust) begins with an overview of the modern Olympics, showing readers that the "spirit of the Olympics" was never entirely dissociated from politics (Germany was not invited to participate in the first two Olympics held after WWI). The author then turns to Hitler's assumption of power in 1933, two years after Berlin had been selected as the site of the 1936 Olympics, and documents the Nazis' systematic abrogation of individual rights and liberties. The discussion of the actual 1936 Olympics centers on the political uses made of them by Hitler and his propagandists, the spectacular performance of Jesse Owens notwithstanding (an eight-page color section of posters, both Nazi and anti-Nazi, convincingly demonstrates the relationship between athletic competition and propaganda in Hitler's Germany). Perhaps the most interesting sections cover American responses as political and religious groups and individual athletes considered a boycott of the Olympics; a quick look at Jim Crow laws and American anti-Semitism helps readers place various reactions and decisions in context. The writing is careful and unadorned, the facts laid out for readers to interpret. Plentiful sidebars focus on particular athletes, especially those compromised by Nazi policies. An unusually generous selection of period photos gives the material particular sharpness and immediacy. Ages 10-up. (Apr.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 7 Up-This book is based on a special exhibition developed by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum that is currently touring the country. It offers not only a history of the notorious Berlin games of 1936, but it also includes the stories of many of the athletes who took part and those who did not for political reasons. Bachrach delves into the workings of the Nazi propaganda machine, the controversy inside the U.S. Olympic Committee as to whether our nation should participate in the games, and the fate of the Jewish athletes who competed. The athletic feats of Jesse Owens and other African Americans are well covered. Illustrations include period black-and-white photographs, cartoons, and posters. The full-color posters at the end of the book do an especially good job of conveying the Nazis' attitudes toward race and their beliefs in the superiority of "Aryan Blood," as well as the techniques of propaganda. An annotated time line of the history of Nazi Germany, suggestions for further reading (mostly adult titles), and a detailed index are appended. A deeper look at the history and the complexities surrounding this notorious Olympics than is found in other books.
Todd Morning, Schaumburg Township Public Library, IL
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This large and attractive book tells the story of the 1936 Summer Olympics held in Berlin. Many Americans have heard of them, though their knowledge is limited to the fact that Jesse Owens, an African-American, won four gold medals, humiliating Adolf Hitler. This book tells the story of those Olympics from the choice of venue in 1931, through the rise of Hitler and National Socialism, the Nazi racial policies, the movement to boycott the games, the Olympics themselves, and finally on to the aftermath of the games and the Holocaust. Following the texts are some wonderful appendices on the chronology of the games, statistics on the 1896-1936 Olympics, and a list of nations participating in the 1936 Olympics. But don’t stop there! After the index is collection of in-color reproductions of posters and artwork connected with the 1936 Olympics.

This book is absolutely wonderful! It covers everything you ever wanted to know about the 1936 Olympics, and even quite a few things you never would have thought to ask. Although this book is placed under Ages 9-12 category, it is very informative, and a must-read for anyone who wants to understand those games. I highly recommend this book!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the best summary for this historical event. The pictures are amazing. I used it for an English research paper and it covered aspects of the games. Well written as well.
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2 of 6 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 25, 2003
Format: Paperback
The book I read on the Holocaust was called The Nazi Olympics: Berlin 1936 by Susan D. Bachrach. This book is about the Olympics held by the Nazis. In this book, it tells about the steps Nazis took to hold the Olympics. It also tells you where exactly the Olympics were held. This book is not a book that actually tells a story, it is a factual book that tells facts and gives you images to describe the facts. Adolf Hitler was head of Germany's Government. In 1931, Berlin was chosen as the site of the 1936 Summer Games. After World War I, Hitler and the Nazi promised a "new Germany" that would give to those many Germans who were fearful to the future. Soon Germany was turned into a police state for "Aryans only". As the year of 1936 came closer and closer with the Olympics, people questioned whether the Olympics should be held in a country whose ideology ran counter to the ideals that inspired to the Games. Many participants questioned the same thing.
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