3 out of 4 stars
Share This Review
Parallels in Autocracy by Wolfgang Mack is a non-fiction book about the author's experiences as a young boy growing up in Nazi Germany and his thoughts on how dictators can rise to power. The author analyzes many countries that have had dictators in the 20th century, highlighting his own experiences as a foreigner working in those countries. The writer's tone is informative, analytical, and complex, displaying his knowledge and experience in a professional way.
The author begins by describing his feelings of despair and grief when his friend, Gunter, suddenly disappeared along with all his family. The author knew that this was not a good sign, as it meant that the Nazis had taken his whole family away for interrogation, probably never to be seen again. The writer describes in detail the fear instilled by the Nazis, as people would often look behind their shoulders because they were scared that people would eavesdrop on what they were saying and report them to the Nazis. The writer continues by explaining how Hitler gradually ascended to absolute power, as he began by being democratically elected, but later took control of the courts and massacred his political rivals using his henchmen to carry out his bloody murders.
There were numerous pleasant elements in this book. For one, the author described his memories originally, sharing his personal experiences in a unique and authentic way. Furthermore, the writer structured this book beautifully, beginning with his own childhood in totalitarian Germany, continuing by describing other twentieth-century dictatorships, and ending by highlighting that the US is not safe from the tangles of totalitarianism. The blend between historical facts and the writer's experiences provided a wonderful harmony and completeness in the text. What I liked most about this book was that it was very persuasive and argumentative since the writer employed various case studies to prove his points.
What I disliked most about the text was that it contained many grammatical slips, which downplayed the writer's status.
This book will be mostly enjoyed by readers who are interested in politics and history. Readers who are aware of some facts related to 20th-century totalitarian regimes will find this book easier to navigate. Both religious and non-religious readers can enjoy the text.
In summary, I rate this book with 3 out of 4 stars. I did not give it a perfect rating due to the number of errors I observed in the text. However, a lower score would have been unjust, as this book was coherent, original, accurate, and argumentative.
Parallels in Autocracy
View: on Bookshelves