Why in 1941 in Nazi Germany was forbidden to write in italics

History 15/02/20 Why in 1941 in Nazi Germany was forbidden to write in italics

In January 1941, in Nazi Germany, published a new decree banning so-called Gothic italic. From this moment on, all publications were required to use the Antiqua font. What had caused this change?

the Destruction of the Jewish

As he writes in his book “They fought for the Motherland” Yitzhak Arad, the Nazi ideology is supposed to complete the destruction of the Jews. The attitude of the representatives of this nationality in Nazi Germany was appropriate. Moreover, all the alleged persecution was carried out only on “legal grounds.” So, if you believe Michael Bredice, author of the book “Germany: the history of the country, language and culture,” in 1935, Nazi authorities issued the “Law on the protection of German blood and German honor” and “law on the citizens of the Reich”. According to them, marriages between Jews and those who to those not treated, were strictly forbidden.

in addition, the Nazis effectively excluded Jews from economic life in Germany. In 1937, in the ongoing “Aryanization” many Jews lost their businesses and were in the camps. From January 1, 1939, according to Herman Rozanov, the author of the book “Germany under the rule of fascism. 1933-1939”, Jewish people were forbidden to own commercial, industrial and handicraft enterprises. Even Jews couldn’t just leave the country: Boris Havkin in his book “Racism and anti-Semitism in Hitler’s Germany,” writes that in October 1941, the emigration of representatives of the Jewish nationality were prohibited.

Breaking traditions

In the reign of Adolf Hitler in Germany, destroyed all Jewish and even what resembled such. So, on 3 January 1941, was published Regulation (Normalschrifterlass) signed by Martin Bormann and “on behalf of the führer” on the prohibition of the use in the letter Gothic cursive handwriting (Kurrentschrift). This fact mentions in his book “the Psychological analysis of handwriting” and Yuri Chernov. Since then, the publishers of books, various periodicals, Newspapers and magazines had to abandon the Gothic italic. Yes, and the same handwritten font to use was forbidden. In schools, children started to learn the new rules, which included the letter “normal” font (Antiqua).

What explains this innovation? The fact that the Nazis, to put it mildly, differed a strange attitude to traditional values: they at times insisted on their preservation, and sometimes their destruction. A vivid example of this can be a speech of Adolf Hitler, spoken to them in 1934 in Nuremberg. “Your alleged Gothic internalization does not fit well in the age of steel and iron, glass, concrete, of female beauty and male power” – said Hitler. It is therefore not surprising that, as indicated in the publication “National socialism and German discourse” (W J Dodd, “National Socialism and German Discourse”), the first Nazi journal, typed in Antiqua, was released in March 1940. It is noteworthy that the publication was intended for distribution abroad.

the Mythical and the real reasons

a few months Later, Hitler decided to completely abandon the Gothic italic. The Nazi authorities in the following way justified a new resolution: “it is Wrong to consider the so-called Gothic font German. In fact, the so-called Gothic font consists of the Hebrew letters of Chabahar”. This is the text of the Bulletin is reproduced in the book “Philosophy letters” (Elisabeth Birk, Jan Georg Schneider, “Philosophie der Schrift”). Schwabacher’s (Schwabacher) is a form of Gothic letters, which originated in the XV century. Contrary to the statements of the Nazis, still there is no evidence that this font in any way connected with the Jewish people and its history.

It is therefore more plausible seems to be another version of the appearance Postanovline Normalschrifterlass. It is based on the desire of the then German leaders for world domination. The fact that the use of Gothic italic, according to the Nazis, harmed German interests in the country and abroad, because even those foreigners who knew the German language could not disassemble it. If you believe Sylvia Hartmann, author of the book “Antiqua or Fraktur” (Silvia Hartmann, “Fraktur Oder Antiqua”), after the rejection of Kurrentschrift in February 1941, Joseph Goebbels wrote in his diary: “Our language can really become a world language.”

Yulia Popova

© Russian Seven

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