Dr Samuel Koehne writes for the ABC on ‘The Nazi Easter’
To many people around the world today, Easter has come to represent a holiday celebrated with chocolate, while for Christians it remains the core celebration of the church year, marking the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. But how many people see it as indicating the death of a supposedly hate-filled ‘Aryan Jesus’ who was meant to have ‘Germanic blood’? Yet this was precisely the manner in which Easter was depicted by the Nazis in one of their major publications, Der Stürmer.
In a brief article published through the ABC (Religion and Ethics), Dr Samuel Koehne has recently examined the strange concepts surrounding ‘ethnotheist’ thought in the Nazi Party and the ‘Nazi’ version of Easter. Drawing on his considerable expertise on Nazism and religion, he argues that the dominant concern was racial ideology and what might be ‘appropriate’ for the German race, not the celebration of Easter as a Christian festival.
Although there have been a number of scholars that have published work on the ‘Nazi Christmas’ (Dr Koehne amongst them), there has been far less research completed on Easter, and this forms a current research interest for Dr Koehne.