The Nazi dictator’s twisted autobiography ‘Mein Kampf’ — a manifesto filled with the future Führer’s anti-Semitic rants — is now a best-seller in the country he once ruled.
A scholarly edition of the infamous book hit shelves last month — the first time it was legally published in Germany in 70 years. This week, it ranked second on the Der Spiegel’s non-fiction list, behind the far-less-controversial “The Secret Life of Trees.”
Hitler first published “Mein Kampf” (“My Struggle”) in 1925 while serving a sentence for his failed Beer Hall Putsch, an attempt to overthrow the German government two years earlier. The ravings of a madman, the book was made required reading in Germany after Hitler took over the country in 1933.
But after World War II, the government of Bavaria, which owned the copyright, forbade its publication. But its copyright ran out in 2015 — and the Institute of Contemporary History released its heavily annotated version, which includes explanations by historians to put the book in its proper hateful context. Even Jews — the main target of Hitler’s “Final Solution” — had no problem with its publication.
“We do not object to a critical edition, contrasting Hitler’s racial theories with scientific findings, to be at the disposal of research and teaching,” Josef Schuster, the head of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, told the Associated Press.
Even still, booksellers originally tried to suppress the sale of the new “Mein Kampf” after it reemerged last month, with many choosing to not advertise it or order just a single copy for their stores, according to the BBC.
But online sales surged, and in-store purchases rose starkly soon after, putting it near the top of the Der Spiegel chart this week.
It’s not the first time Hitler, who died in infamy in 1945, has been in the news recently. In October, the film adaptation of “Look Who’s Back” — a comic novel about Hitler living in today’s world — became the highest-grossing movie in Germany. source