Adolf Hitler (20 April 1889 – 30 April 1945) was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party (German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP), commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945 and dictator of Nazi Germany.
[Hitler] claimed that in his penniless Bohemian youth he saw Tristan Und Isolde dozens of times. Wagner's Germanic music transported Hitler's thoughts and feelings to a world of mythic greatness, with gods, giants and dwarves who were supposed to represent Jews. Nor did he drop his student habits - he would talk for hours on such subjects as the sort of soup the Spartans drank or whether there was life on Mars.
Hitler never drank or smoked, which was banned in his presence. The only time he danced was when he did a jig beneath the Eiffel Tower after conquering France. As a vegetarian his meals consisted of mashed potatoes and pulses, with endless vitamin supplements.
Adolf Hitler was an artist—a modern artist, at that—and Nazism was a movement shaped by his aesthetic sensibility. Cosmopolitan Vienna incubated his peculiar genius as well as his hideous ideas. These views have been in the air recently, and a trenchant scholarly exhibition...advances them.
Although [Hitler] was fanatically pan-German—caught up in visions of an expanded Germany, which would incorporate Austria—he had laudatory things to say about Jews at the time. He proved, however, an apt pupil of the city's rampant strains of anti-Semitism, which exploited popular resentment of the wealthy Jewish bourgeoisie that had arisen under Franz Josef I, the conservative but clement—and, effectively, the last—Hapsburg emperor. Hitler studied the spellbinding oratorical style of the city's widely beloved populist, anti-Semitic mayor, Karl Lueger.
Hitler saw Leni Riefenstahl as a director who could use aesthetics to produce an image of a strong Germany imbued with Wagnerian motifs of power and beauty. In 1933, he asked Riefenstahl to direct a short film, Der Sieg des Glaubens (The Victory of Faith), shot at that year's Nuremberg Nazi Party Rally.
The Ahnenerbe [a Nazi research institute, founded by Himmler] was in the business of mythmaking. Its prominent researchers devoted themselves to distorting the truth and churning out carefully tailored evidence to support the ideas of Adolf Hitler, who believed that only the Aryans--a fictional "Nordic" race of tall, flaxen-haired men and women from northern Europe--possessed the genius needed to create civilization. Most modern Germans, he claimed, were descended from these ancient Aryans.
[Hitler's visit to Italy in 1938] came at a critical moment in nazi foreign policy and fascist domestic policy. Ian Kershaw has argued that the 'spring of 1938 began a phase in which Hitler's obsession with accomplishing his mission in his own lifetime started to overtake cold political calculation.'
[In a one-page letter to British authorities, sent in 1931, [Hitler] wrote: "...I should be happy, if... the unhappy war-psychosis could be overcome on such a scale as to permit the realisation of the truly cordial relationship between the British and the German peoples so eagerly desired by myself and my movement."
Under [Hitler's] rule, Germany took the extraordinary steps of cutting education, persecuting intellectuals, burning books, and destroying art. Hitler was determined to raise German education and culture to a higher plane but, by the time he became chancellor, hate overshadowed his creativity, crippling a superb educational system.
For years before the Nuremberg Laws, Hitler had been seriously troubled by the rumor that his paternal grandfather was a Jew. Political opponents had used it against him and so had a blackmailer. He had the rumor investigated over and over and reportedly took measures to destroy evidence supporting it.
After the first world war, Hitler began to suffer from dyspepsia, characterised by flatulence and pain in the right hypochondrium... In keeping with his distaste for traditional authority, he experimented with several patent medicines... He gradually adopted an eccentric diet of which the main ingredients were rusks, honey, mushrooms, curds, and yoghurt.
When [Hitler] became a public person, he was concerned about his figure and took phenolphthalein with the idea that it would prevent him from gaining weight. He hardly ever drank tea, coffee, or alcohol, but sucked "cola candies."
“What is America but beauty queens, millionaires, stupid records and Hollywood?” asked Adolf Hitler in 1940. With hindsight, this ranks as just about the most foolish rhetorical question posed during the second world war. But it did not seem so at the time...When Hitler mocked its prowess, America had experienced not so much a double-dip as a double-dive depression.