Nazi Socialism vs. Spartan Ethos

Essay by jakedorHigh School, 10th grade March 2007

download word file, 4 pages 3.0

Downloaded 22 times

National Socialism is a deeply conservative political ideology that stresses racial superiority, the subordination of the individual to the state and the right of the strong to rule the weak . Besides being associated with militarism, totalitarianism and dictatorial rule, National Socialist governments rely heavily on intense nationalism, mass appeal and other forms of propaganda to indoctrinate their people into giving up all personal rights in the name of the state . Moreover, National Socialist governments often initiate expansionism as well as a state obsession in eugenics, which results the purging of undesirables . However, throughout history there have been few states worthy of being deemed “National Socialist”. Some may even argue that Nazi Germany was the only true National Socialist state, while Mussolini’s Italy and Franco’s Spain could be better described as supplementary forms of fascism. Nevertheless, it is extremely important not to overlook the ancient Greek city-state of Sparta on the Peloponnese (the height of its history lasting from 700 BCE to 371 BCE) , which in some respects can be considered the first National Socialist state, though its society and political system does not entirely conform to the ideal model of National Socialism.

First and foremost, Sparta was a truly militaristic state. The Spartans’ need for a strong military and secret police force stemmed from their fear of a possible helot (the serf class that served Spartan citizens) revolt and the implications that it would have on their society . Spartan leaders focused strongly on maintaining a large and well-trained army by implementing mandatory military enrolment for all Spartan men between the ages of 20 and 60 . Though even before enrolling in the state army, Spartan males had to undergo a grueling physical training program during much of their youth, to develop them into strong fighters...