The Origins of Totalitarianism begins with the rise of anti-Semitism in central and western Europe in the 1800s and continues with an examination of European colonial imperialism from 1884 to the outbreak of World War I. Arendt explores the institutions and operations of totalitarian movements, focusing on the two genuine forms of totalitarian government in our time—Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia—which she adroitly recognizes were two... more
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Ruth Ben-Ghiat Her most useful (and her most chilling) conclusion for today is that totalitarian tools were not specific to Nazism or Stalinism or any ideology. Arendt’s words should be studied today by those who want to prevent the further spread of authoritarian regimes and the ideologies they are propagating. (Source)