This unique book is a comprehensive analysis of Hitler written by a psychologist. The author goes beyond the prevalent Freudian interpretations of Hitler as the victim of a traumatic childhood by explaining the inner world of Hitler's ideas and visions as the product of his paranoia. This psychological analysis is framed by a poignant introduction, in which Schwaab reflects on his experience of growing up in Nazi Germany and by a personal afterword, in which the meaning of Nazism is placed within the context of current developments in a reunited Germany.
The author discusses the impact of Hitler's exposure to both the political and anti-Semitic climate in his youthful days in Vienna and the subsequent experiences as a frontline soldier during the First World War. He then focuses on the depth of Hitler's disturbed mind in the grip of an obsession with the dangers of Jews and the compulsion to destroy them. Four stages in the progression of his paranoid mental disturbance are described. This fascinating volume will appeal to readers interested in psychology and history, as well as to scholars and students of Nazi Germany.