Sacralized Politics and Sacred Interactions: The National Socialist Martyr Cult in the Ruhr Area (1929-1939)
The National Socialist martyr cult in the Ruhr area was characterized by sacralized politics and sacred interactions. My study makes a contribution to placing the NS movement in the history of religion. For this purpose, it analyzes how the National Socialists constructed their martyr figures posthumously and mythically; how they venerated these men regionally and locally; how they put their faith into practice; and which strategies of sacralization they used. In short, they positioned themselves as an independent provider of faith within the Martyr Cult that specifically addressed and demanded the commitment of movement activists through forms of sacralized politics. At the same time, the study illustrates the dependence of the National Socialist martyr cult on church rituals and ambiguous Christian content.