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Different DrummersJazz in the Culture of Nazi Germany$
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Michael H. Kater

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780195165531

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195165531.001.0001

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Epilogue The Final Victory Postwar Jazz Triumphant

Epilogue The Final Victory Postwar Jazz Triumphant

(p.202) Epilogue The Final Victory Postwar Jazz Triumphant
Different Drummers

Michael H. Kater (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

In the area of popular culture in the Third Reich, the history of jazz, with its inherent contradictions, inconsistencies, and paradoxes, well illustrates the improvised nature of a dictatorial regime whose alleged totalitarianism was neither seamless nor inevitable. It was punctured by compromise and accommodation, evident primarily in the executive organs of the Reich propaganda ministry and Joseph Goebbels himself, who was ridden with duplicity and often inertia. In the case of jazz, Goebbels was compelled by a never-ending series of circumstances to allow for the continued existence of a phenomenon, which he personally found contemptible from an aesthetic vantage point as well as from the perspective of the racial purist. Ironically, it was jazz and not the Third Reich that saw the Final Victory so often conjured up by the Nazi leaders. This victory was possible because enough genuine musicians and true believers in jazz had managed to stay alive, quietly treasuring the music in their hearts.

Keywords:   jazz, popular culture, Germany, Third Reich, Joseph Goebbels, racism, swing, musicians

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