Leading up to and during the Second World War, the Nazified German Government wanted to perpetuate the belief that due to their exceptional strength spread through various forms of propaganda the “Aryan Race” was undefeatable. Unfortunately, this testament, and the propaganda that supported it, is still used by some to substantiate their claims that the Nazis devised the “master race”. The source of their strength has remained largely unresearched, so what was the factor that allowed the German home and war front to possess large amounts of energy to aid in their fight against the Allied forces? Initially, from whisperings at German pubs after the war was over, word began to spread outside of Germany that this unexplainable strength was, in fact, manufactured.
Volksdrogen: The Third Reich Powered by Methamphetamine analyzes the rise of German pharmaceuticals to how the German people during the interwar years and into World War II were able to gain boundless strength and energy to support and fight for their homeland. This paper examines how methamphetamine was accepted and integrated into German society due to its availability over-the-counter in pharmacies under the name Pervitin. Despite the anti-drug agenda pushed by the Nazis, Pervitin was widely accepted because initial studies showed it increased the productivity of the German people. As a result, it quickly became utilized by the Wehrmacht and Luftwaffe as a way to keep soldiers fighting. Examining this topic is important not only for understanding the deeper context of the war, but it is also crucial to preventing future generations from striving to achieve what the Nazis were fighting for.
Date of publication
Isenberg, Madison, "Volksdrogen: The Third Reich Powered by Methamphetamine" (2023). Senior Projects. Paper 2.