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Post A Hitler Question
Created by John Eipper on 04/10/19 3:05 AM

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A Hitler Question (Enrique Torner, USA, 04/10/19 3:05 am)

Something just came up in my research I could use your help with, given the many expert historians on Hitler. By the way, I tried a search on the WAIS website, typing Hitler in the box, and came up with over 41,000 posts! My goodness! Hitler would be proud of his popularity in this forum! Anyway, with that many posts, I thought it would be easier to just plain ask you than to go through all of them.

I have two main questions for this "Hitler fan group": 1) If you had to recommend me a biography on Hitler that dealt with his personal life, which one would you recommend?  And 2) What do you know about Hitler and Mussolini's relationship with the occult? Are there any sources you could recommend me?

I am looking forward to reading your wise responses and recommendations. Thank you in advance for your help.

JE comments:  Fan group?  C'mon, Enrique!  Hitler is more like driving past a bloody car crash:  you have to stare.  In Spain it's what they call morbo.  And 41,000 is the total number of WAIS posts in our archive.  We do fall for Godwin's Law more than I'd like, but not every WAIS post is about Hitler.

I Googled "WAIS Hitler" and came up with this classic:  "Hitler's Brain and Mussolini's Penis."  How can you not look?

https://waisworld.org/go.jsp?id=02a&o=108697

 


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  • Hitler's Psychology: Two Books (Nigel Jones, UK 04/10/19 9:27 AM)
    Though hardly a Hitler "fan," I suppose I count as one of Enrique Torner's Hitler experts, having written two books on the subject and still leading tours to the historical sites of Nazi Germany.

    So a quick answer to Enrique's questions. The two best biographies in English on Hitler's personality and psychology rather than his politics, both by Americans, are Robert Waite's The Psychopathic God and Ron Rosenbaum's Explaining Hitler.


    Both books also delve into the Occult. It has to be said that Himmler rather than Hitler was the Nazis' big Occult fancier, though Hitler did occasionally use astrologers. There are any number of wacko books on the subject, but these two are good to start with.


    JE comments:  Inspired by Enrique Torner's question, I looked up "US Presidents and Astrologers."  Reagan was the best-known believer in the stars, although Trump is reported to keep a "spiritual adviser" (Paula White) on retainer:


    https://www.cheatsheet.com/culture/these-are-the-presidents-who-believed-in-astrology-and-how-donald-trump-compares.html/


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  • Hitler, Mussolini and the Occult (Eugenio Battaglia, Italy 04/10/19 10:26 AM)
    Hitler may have been interested in the occult, although I am inclined to believe that it is BS invented about him after his defeat.

    Mussolini was never interested in the occult. He was educated by his mother and in college in the Catholic faith but as a socialist youth he became anticlerical and atheist. See also his novels (not the best in Italian literature) L'Uomo e la Divinità 1904, Claudia Particella, l'amante del Cardinale 1910 (the most famous), Il Trentino visto da un Socialista 1911, La mia vita dal 29 luglio 1883 al 23 Novembre 1911, and finally Giovanni Huss il veridico 1913).


    In his maturity he returned to the Catholic faith and in his last days he even was confessed and took communion.  See the books of Fra Ginepro and Don Ennio Innocenti and declaration of Saint Padre Pio da Montalcina.


    JE comments:  Eugenio, you've told us much about Mussolini, but this is the first mention of his novels.  Can you elaborate?  In what way are they not very good? 


    And I presume Claudia Particella is about a lecherous old cardinal?  (I'm taking a guess here.  Cardinals have to be old, right?)

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    • Mussolini as Novelist: "Claudia Particella, The Cardinal's Mistress" (Eugenio Battaglia, Italy 04/13/19 4:48 AM)
      Our esteemed moderator (April 10th) asked me to elaborate on the books Mussolini wrote in his youth.

      It is not an easy task for many reasons, starting with the fact that I seldom read novels but only history books.


      Mussolini's books were political, but if we look at the great Italian writers of the past, almost all their works were politically motivated. See Guicciardini, but also Dante, Manzoni, etc. All had the underlying mission of improving people's conditions, the unity and independence of Italy and the weakening or even elimination of the temporal power of the Papacy.


      Mussolini's first book L'Uomo e la Divinità is mostly pro-atheism, while the later books still have anticlerical messages but not a real animosity against the Catholic faith.


      When he achieved power, Mussolini was eager to reach an agreement with the Papacy, and to some degree he boycotted his own literary production, which he considered to be of minor importance.


      However, an English edition of Claudia Particella had considerable success.


      The new Italian culture--lay, democratic and antifascist--has always been and still is dominated by the Communist party and their heirs in any aspect of literature, film, painting, music and even Facebook. So Mussolini's books are anathema.


      Allow me a few comments on Claudia Particella, l'amante del Cardinale. It was published as a series (57 installments) in the newspaper Il popolo di Trento directed by Cesare Battisti, the future martyr for Italian Unity hanged by the Austrians. It had a great success, the newspaper increased its daily circulation considerably, and Mussolini received a raise from 15 to 25 lire for each chapter.


      The story is about the love affair between the Cardinal Emanuele Madruzzo (1599-1658) and Claudia Particella against the background of the ecclesiastic decadence of the early 1600s.


      It is also necessary to consider the local conditions of the Trentino, at the time of the writing. The Italian irredentist sentiments were united in requesting better social conditions, but they were not supported by the high Catholic spheres loyal to the Emperor of Austria, including the usual lackey De Gasperi. See also his later lackey attitudes towards relations towards the Empire. However he worked energetically against the Communist Party in 1948.


      The book features a perfidious character named Benizio (a clear reference to Benito), while a nice woman is named Rachele, as was Mussolini's fiancee and later marvelous wife. The book can be considered proto-feminist for its strong presentation and support for women. It's prophetic in some ways, too.


      Don Benizio tells Claudia: "The blinded people will drag your body through the streets, through the mud and shame." And Claudia answers: "It doesn't matter. Outrage can be a triumph. All naive people are blind. They love and hate without discernment. They make victims and later love them when the moment of their bestial fanaticism has ended."


      Clearly both the figures of the wife and of the lover of Mussolini are previewed. Probably in a freer society the books of Mussolini would have much more attention and appreciation.


      The book, in Italian, can be bought reprinted by Edizioni Lupo, at the price of 18 euros. The English version

      The Cardinal's Mistress can be bought on Amazon UK at 13 euros or £10 or through Kindle at the price of £1.49.


      JE comments:  Claudia Particella could now be read in a completely new context:  that of the current scandals in the Catholic church.  If the novel had anyone's name but Mussolini's in the by-line, it would probably have been made into a TV series by now.

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