A History of the Münster Anabaptists: Inner Emigration and by George von der Lippe, V. Reck-Malleczewen

By George von der Lippe, V. Reck-Malleczewen

A defining paintings within the "Inner Emigration" literary flow, Friedrich Reck-Malleczewen's historical past of the Münster Anabaptists used to be written in 1937 as a feedback of the Nazi regime. This English translation contains files, scholarly essays, and a close creation.

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Extra info for A History of the Münster Anabaptists: Inner Emigration and the Third Reich: A Critical Edition of Friedrich Reck-Malleczewen’s Bockelson: A Tale of Mass Insanity

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In public too they now recognize each other by a small copper pin with the letters DWWF: “Das Wort ward Fleisch” (“The Word Became Flesh”); other than that they are no longer forced to secrecy and illegality in the rebellious city. In the streets the mob, which in the meantime has been armed, has become so combative that those who have remained faithful to the old beliefs turn their homes into armed camps and form something of a militia. On the thirteenth Bockelson and Gert tom Kloster arrived in Münster.

Reck’s intention of demonstrating parallels between Bockelson and Hitler is served by stressing the gutter scenario as a suggestion of Hitler’s own slightly nebulous roots—his aged father Alois had been born out of wedlock with no definitive proof of paternity, and Hitler himself was the product of his father’s third marriage to a much younger woman (Toland, 3–13). Reck’s characterizations of Bockelson as a bastard and quite literal gutter trash are meant for Hitler as well—monarchist Reck found both men to be lacking not only moral fiber but also the appropriate socio-economic pedigree.

He became a lower-level functionary and therefore had an insider’s knowledge of the Anabaptist colony. After hunger had Münster in its hold, Gresbeck escaped to Waldeck’s side and, through his knowledge, made it possible for the bishop’s force to finally overcome the Anabaptists. Gresbeck wrote an account of his time in the Münster enclave which is in many ways more valuable than Kerssenbroch’s, in that Gresbeck was an eyewitness to the very end and did not have Kerssenbroch’s understandable bias against the Anabaptists (Williams, 456–457).

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