HIST3445 - Guns, Butter and Forced Labour. The Economic Foundations of Nazi Dictatorship


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: School exam
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
School exam 100/100 6 hours

Course content

In this course Nazi economic policy will be analysed in a historical perspective with a special emphasis on recent debates in the literature. Questions to be addressed are, for instance: Was the significant reduction of German unemployment during the first years of the Nazi rule, which heavily legitimized the Nazi regime in the eyes of the Germans, predominately caused by measures implemented by the new government or was this reduction merely a coincidence with the worldwide economic recovery? How did the Nazi regime transform the German economy from a peace to a war economy - by force, by incentives or by regulations? And how did the Nazis exploit occupied Europe and which impact had the foreign contribution to the German war effort?

Learning outcome

A candidate who passes this course is expected to have the following learning outcome according to the course curriculum, defined as knowledge and skills:


The candidate

  • will acquire an advanced knowledge about Nazi economic policy both in Germany and occupied Europe
  • will acquire a thorough understanding of how the Nazis managed to transform the German economy and to exploit occupied countries
  • will acquire detailed insight into the historiography of this period
  • will acquire the ability to apply theories, perspectives as well as tools common in economic history (such as interpreting historical statistics)


The candidate

  • should be able to critically interrogate the concepts, theoretical assumptions and established perspectives of the field
  • should be able to write an extended independent, well-structured analytical essay/paper, using the relevant empirical knowledge and theoretical perspectives of the field

Learning methods and activities


Compulsory assignments

  • Compulsory paper

Further on evaluation

Each student who wants to take exams in this course shall write a paper about a specific research article in the field, describing the questions addressed in this article, the methods applied, and the sources used.

Required previous knowledge

BA in history or equivalent.

Course materials

See curriculum published at the start of the semester, and other materials (reading and lecture lists and other relevant information) published on Blackboard.

More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2025

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • History
Contact information
Course coordinator:

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Modern History and Society


Examination arrangement: School exam

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Autumn ORD School exam 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
Spring ORD School exam 100/100 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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