This article explores the widespread international debate in modern historiography maintained around the "brutalization" thesis, which was popularized in George L. Mosse's book Fallen Soldiers (1990). According to Mosse, the war experience of the front soldiers during World War I was the cause of the heightened levels of political violence during the Weimar Republic. Such brutalization allegedly provided the basis for Nazism and the Genocide. in an attempt to clarify the origins of Mosse's interpretation this work analyses criticism, reformulations and uses of "brutalization". In spite of the fact that the heated debate reached no consensus, it eventually managed to establish a revealing -though vague and scarcely open to analytical potential notion in the professional language of historians.
Subject: Brutalization; Historiography; George L. Mosse; Political violence; Interwar period; World War I