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Slatted wooden desk with attached bench on wrought iron supports used in a Dresden schoolroom in Nazi Germany

Object | Accession Number: 1990.44.7

Wooden school desk with seating for two on an attached bench made in 1925 that continued in use in a schoolroom in Dresden, Germany, during the government of the Third Reich, 1933-1945. After Adolf Hitler was appointed chancellor of Germany in 1933, the Nazi authorities passed new laws that dictated who could teach and be educated in the German school system. Quotas were placed that restricted the number of Jewish students who could attend public schools, and under the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service Act, teachers that were Jewish or considered “politically unreliable” were purged from schools. The act also made Nazi Party membership compulsory for all remaining teachers. At the entrance to school, students had to lift their arms and say, “Heil Hitler!” School curriculum was changed to emphasize sports, history, and racial science with the purpose of indoctrinating students with Nazi ideology. Subjects such as religion became less important, and were eventually removed from the curriculum altogether. Any textbooks used to educate students had to be approved by the party. Censors removed books that did not meet these standards from the classroom, and introduced new textbooks that taught students militarism, racism, antisemitism, obedience to state authority, and love for Hitler. Instruction aimed to produce race-conscious, obedient, self-sacrificing Germans who would be willing to die for Führer and Fatherland. Nordic and other “Aryan” races were glorified while labeling Jews and other so-called “inferior” peoples as “parasitic, bastard races” incapable of creating culture or civilization.

creation:  1925
use:  1925-1945
use: school; Dresden (Germany)
Furnishings and Furniture
Object Type
School benches (aat)
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the Schulmuseum des Rates des Bezirkes Dresden
Record last modified: 2021-02-10 09:17:17
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