EVDOKIMOVA T.V. Wolfram Wette and His View on History of German Wehrmacht in World War II

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu4.2023.1.18

Tatyana V. Evdokimova

Doctor of Sciences (History), Associate Professor, Professor,

Department of World History and Methods of Teaching History and Social Science, Volgograd State Socio-Pedagogical University,

Prosp. Lenina, 27, 400005 Volgograd, Russian Federation

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Abstract. Introduction. The article analyzes the essence and dynamics of the views of the German historian Wolfram Wette on the history of the German Wehrmacht in the World War II.

Methods and materials. The source bases of the study are monographs, publications in books, magazines, newspapers, Wette’s interviews. When writing the article, such methods as historical-systemic, historical-comparative, historical-biographical ones, as well as the methods of communicative analysis of monographs and articles, and comparative analysis of various sources were used.

Analysis. The study made it possible to single out two stages in W. Wette’s research activities: the study of military history traditional issues (the military operations history, military leadership, etc.) and the study of the military “history of everyday life”. The boundary between the stages became the denunciation of the myths of Stalingrad Battle which the article’s author, according to the Wette’s works, considers as a trigger for the World War II outcome, building a democratic society in Germany, forming a modern culture of memory. The article presents a critical analysis made by the historian W. Wette of a number of “legends” that existed in the Germany’s military history and public consciousness about the “preventive” nature of the war against the Soviet Union, about the “heroic death” of the 6th Army near Stalingrad, about the “pure Wehrmacht” and his “heroes”. The focus of the history of the Wehrmacht during the World War II “from below” is a “little man”, a simple soldier. The author of the analyzed works pays special attention to the denial of the thesis about the impossibility of resisting the criminal policy of the Nazi leadership in the army and, using the example of ordinary Wehrmacht military men, shows a small group of “rescuers in military uniform” who risked themselves to save human lives.

Results. The conclusion is made about the inseparable connection between Wette’s scientific research and his social activities to overcome the Nazi past of Germany and forming a democratic consciousness of German civil society.

Key words: Wolfram Wette, World War II, German Wehrmacht, historical research, history of everyday life, culture of memory.

Citation. Evdokimova T.V. Wolfram Wette and His View on History of German Wehrmacht in World War II. Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 4. Istoriya. Regionovedenie. Mezhdunarodnye otnosheniya [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. History. Area Studies. International Relations], 2023, vol. 28, no. 1, pp. 198-208. (in Russian). DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu4.2023.1.18.

Лицензия Creative Commons

Wolfram Wette and His View on History of German Wehrmacht in World War II by Evdokimova T.V. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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