RUI: Compliance with and Opposition to Totalitarianism

  • Johnson, Eric E. (PI)

Grant Details


This grant investigates how ordinary citizens act against and/or in accord with totalitarian states imposing societal control through the use of terror. Specifically, the project focuses on the role that ordinary German citizens played in struggling against and complying with the system of terror that operated in Nazi Germany. It is based on rigorous quantitative and qualitative examination of thousands of previously unexamined arrest and court records in three German cities. Analysis of these data enables differentiation between which types of people supported Nazism and which did not. Further, it will allow for empirical analysis of whether and how the Gestapo-led system of terror was dependent on ordinary citizens for its success in stamping out potential collective resistence to the Nazi regime. In addition to filling in an important empirical gap on how ordinary citizens responded to and interacted with this system of terror, it provides a general model for investigating the politicization of crime and the judiciary as an instrument of social control. Also, this model will have wide relevance to scholars interested in totalitarian societies, their maintenance, and their breakdown as an internal dynamic.

Effective start/end date09/1/9205/31/95


  • National Science Foundation: $76,603.00


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