Modern World History 9.7 Lebensraum and Other Not-so-Great Ideas

Time to learn about Lebensraum. And unlike most German words, this one isn't fun. At least we'll always have wienerschnitzel.

LanguageEnglish Language

Transcript

00:23

the solution.. Lebensraum. We're adding another word [List of master race needs]

00:28

to your budding German vocabulary there people. Lebensraum which literally

00:32

means living space, well this wasn't just a word to the Germans however it was a

00:37

concept see for centuries Germany had a bit of an overpopulation problem [Lots of people crammed in together]

00:41

the Germans had to figure out not only where to put all of their extra people [People all move together]

00:45

but how to fill all those extra bellies with food well by the beginning of the

00:49

20th century the Germans had decided that well hey if they just built an

00:53

empire of overseas colonies then they'd have enough space to stash everybody [German flags popping up on a map of the world]

00:58

including the in-laws, and so the term Lebensraum came to represent Germany's [German in-laws being moved to Africa]

01:04

Imperial need to expand but then World War one happened not only did the

01:09

Germans lose much of the territory they'd collected over the last few [Map showing land lost by Germany in WWI]

01:12

decades but many Germans starved during the British sea blockade of their

01:17

country well when the Nazis came to power the idea of Lebensraum had [German army soldiers marching]

01:21

undergone a bit of a Hitler makeover it was still about territorial expansion it [Hitler waving from a window]

01:26

was still about using that territory to grow food but now it was also about [Field full of crops]

01:30

removing everybody the Germans thought racially inferior to themselves and [Non-Aryan people looking scared]

01:34

repopulating that space of the world you know with Aryans.. Well not exactly the

01:40

kind of makeover we'd ever want to get.. While Lebensraum had its roots in the [Woman with a moustache at a salon]

01:44

Germany of the Middle Ages the more recent understanding of the word pulled

01:48

from other movements in other parts of the world like the United States yeah.. [Hitler looking at the US through a telescope]

01:52

While manifest destiny was the belief in 19th century America that we were

01:57

seriously awesome and we should spread our awesomeness from sea to shining sea [The meaninig of Manifest Destiny is shown]

02:02

yeah an exhibit right like that well not only that but God wanted us to do this [God cheering America on]

02:08

yeah we were destined to be manifest something like [Guy holding a gun and the US flag]

02:11

that. Anyway he wanted us to take over Texas and Oregon and all that land in [US flag popping up all over the map]

02:16

the middle there and never mind those pesky Native Americans and heck why not

02:20

Cuba and the Philippines too who are we to argue with the big man upstairs.

02:24

So basically Hitler didn't invent the idea that the best people in the world

02:28

should go out and take whatever they want and kill anyone who gets in the way. [Uncle Sam appears]

02:32

He had some help from the good ol US of A which makes it a bit ironic that it

02:36

took the u.s. to end Nazi dreams of global and racial domination or we think [Hitler appears behind Uncle Sam]

02:41

it's ironic that that Alanis song, Alanis Morisette, yeah that song..

02:46

It's had us confused since 1995

02:50

(Singing) isn't it ironic - something like that