An Architect of Race - Paul Schultze-Naumburg and National Socialism
Among National Socialist policy makers in the field of aesthetics, Schultze-Naumburg can be counted as a major figure, one of the precursors and most fanatical and doctrinaire ideologues of the movement. In the 1920s he belonged to the group of right-wing intellectuals who were deeply disappointed and embittered by the outcome of World War I and the parliamentary democracy of the Weimar Republic. His Art and Race, which came out in the late 1920s, marked a turning point in his growing radicalization. From that point on Schultze-Naumburg aligned himself closely with the most fanatical and radical guardians of the hermetically conceived purity of National Socialist ideology. Both his writings and actions prove irrefutable evidence of his ambition to formulate a new aesthetics as an alternative to the decline of the era of degeneration. By means of racial and antisemitic arguments, Schultze-Naumburg sought to formulate the principles of an authentic culture that would again express the spirit of the German Volk. This attempt logically led to antisemitism, as it was inextricably linked with the alternative he put forward.