Hannah Arendt's Characteristics Of Totalitarianism

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Hannah Arendt one of the most influential scholars who defines Nazism as totalitarianism and describes totalitarianism as a novel form of government and domination (Arendt, 1953 : 303). Arendt explains how totalitarianism operates to transform the society into a total domination as follows, Wherever it rose to power, it developed entirely new political institutions and destroyed all social, legal and political institutions and destroyed all social, legal and political traditions of the country...totalitarian government always transformed classes into masses, supplanted the party system, not by one-party dictatorships, but by a mass movement, shifted the center of power from the army to the police, and established a foreign policy openly directed towards world domination (Arendt, 1953 : 303). Thus, according to Arendt, totalitarianism is “a chaotic, non-utilitarian, manically dynamic movement of destruction” (Canovan, 1999 : 26). In the light of the aforementioned characteristics of totalitarianism defined, Hannah Arendt claims that totalitarianism is incomprehensible since it is not possible to judge or predict its actions through any traditional, legal, moral or common sense (Arendt, 1953 : 303). Therefore, Arendt evaluates the regimes under Hitler and Stalin rule “not only wicked but also senseless, of a kind that could not be deduced from humanly comprehensible motives” (Canovan, 1999 : 25). Arendt aims to offer an intellectual constraints for the analysis of Hitler’s
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