著者
野中 亮
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.6, pp.41-59, 1998-12-25

The purpose of this paper is to reflect upon what the statements refered to the Aum Shinrikyo Affair manifested. On 20 March 1995,'the Aum Shinrikyo Affair' was happened. In Japan, it was the first case of terror with poison gas, and the first case of terror by cult which caused a calamity that assailed many people. The number of dameged sufferers in this terror is over 5,000,and eleven persons were killed. Japanese mass medias naturally reported this calamity everyday, but these reports become too excessive gradually. Syoko Egawa-she was famous for her reportage of the Aum Shinrikyo Affair-was the most famous' Aum Watcher'. 'Aum Watcher' means the watch for Aum Shinrikyo, she was regerded the leader of Aum Watchers. In this paper, Syoko Egawa's reportages of the Aum Shinrikyo Affair are used as materials for consideration of the Japanese religious-cultural characteristics. The final purpous of this paper is the reflection on the Japanese religious-cultural characteristics with her texts. We contrust The books by Syoko Egawa with the books by Hiromi Shimada-he was a university professor, but he was made to give up his job for his statement refered to the Aum Shinrikyo Affair. He estimated Aum Shinrikyo's religious life and practices very highly. His statement was opposed to the statement by Egawa Syoko who criticized the Aum Shinrikyo's conduct of their organization. But it was not discussion that settled this controversy, the event itself-murder by the Aum Shinrikyo. This incomplete controversy still requires thorough discussion of us. Through this work we show that to consider the problems related to the Aum Shinrikyo Affair is, at the same time, to consider the problems related to the Japanese religious-cultural characteristics.
著者
谷口 俊一
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.8, pp.147-165, 2000

This article deals with the image of Japanese people serving in the army during the interwar period. To analyze this topic, I mainly used readers' columns of newspapers. At this time during which disarmament conference like the Washington Conference took place, Japanese armed forces became a target of criticism. As a consequence, the land forces reduced their armaments without holding an international conference. Critics about the armed forces increased while, on the other hand, the practice of conscription, among other things, was not questioned, and pacifist opinions were hardly heard either. Besides, soldiers having accomplished their military service were highly considered by certain people. Especially from the Manchurian Incident on, critics towards the army faded away. Japanese people became aware of the importance of supporting the army because everyone had a relative or a friend engaged in the army, with the result that many of them unwillingly started to get involved into the war efforts. In such a perspective, one can wonder about the fact that, among all critics formulated against the army after World War I, which clearly influenced the disarmament process in Japan, most ones have been made towards the army as an institution but surprisingly not towards the soldiers themselves. It is also interesting to notice that, rather than diminishing the army officers' strength, on the contrary, all those critics tended to reinforce their intentions of pursuing the militarization of the country. To a certain extent, we may conclude that all those critics might have helped to the constitution of a military state, which would also mean that japanese people failed in preventing the rise of militarism.
著者
赤枝 香奈子
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.10, pp.83-100, 2002-12-25

Recent studies on sexuality have deconstructed `Seiai' (or romantic love) on an analytical basis that treats sexuality and love separately, focusing mainly on the former. Homosexuality has also become a common subject in contemporary sexuality studies. In this paper, I investigate intimate relationships between women of modern Japan, including those containing lesbianism. However I do not discuss such relationships as a matter of general sexuality, as the reality of the relationships shared among women of the day is not yet well known. IVIale homosexuality in modern Japan has been made considerably clear. On the other hand, we do not yet know how the concept of lesbianism in modern Japan was formed, how it functioned, and what types of relationships were associated with it. In this paper, I examine discourses about intimate relationships between women from the end of the Meiji era to the beginning of the Taisho era. I discuss what types of relationships are indicated and that the discourses between these women are really over sexuality. At the beginning of the investigation, I look at some close relationships between women described in the journal Safuran. Safuran was founded by I~azue Otake, a member of an earlier journal called Seito. Seito and its leading figure Raicho Hiratsuka were oriented towards heterosexuality. We cannot define the close relationships found in Safuran simply as the same as the homosexual relationships found today. I argue that the process of building relationships was understood as something sexual in accordance to their reference to western sexology. The discourses in the period mentioned above pay much attention to intimate relationships between women. A double suicide committed by two graduates of a girl's school pulled the trigger. People came to call such relationships `Dousei-no Ai' (love between two people of the same gender), and tended to recognize it as a matter of sexual desire. Nevertheless, it was `excessively-radical friendships' that gained more attention within the discourses. In other words, when criticizing women's homosexuality, authorized commentators were eager to classify friendship under the dichotomy of normaUabnormal, while the topic of sexuality was disregarded. What they then put stress on was to mould women in socially acceptable oriented affection.
著者
右田 裕規
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.9, pp.93-114, 2001-12-25

The fact that the pictures of the Imperial family of Japan were called "goshin-ei", and were treated as the icons of the religious observance at schools in modern Japan was pointed out by a lot of preceding studies on the "goshin-ei". According to these precedent studies, on festival days of the Imperial family, school students at the prewar days were made to worship pictures of the Imperial family that Japanese government sent to many schools, and through these religious observances at schools, the government succeeded in cultivating the respects for the Imperial family in Japanese people. By the way, many pictures and portraits of the Imperial family of Japan were sold by private merchants, and were printed in newspapers and magazines frequently at prewar days. But preceding studies on the "goshin-ei" treated the pictures of the Imperial family that the government sent to schools exclusively, and didn't refer to the pictures and portraits of the Imperial family sold or distributed by private merchants and the mass media. The purposes of this paper are to elucidate the activities of the Japanese government, the mass media and people around gravures of the Imperial family of Japan in newspapers and magazines at prewar times, and to make clear the mentalities to the Imperial family that these gravures cultivated in Japanese people.
著者
有薗 真代
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.12, pp.109-127, 2004-12-25

This paper is written about experiences of Hansen's disease sufferers by using life-history method. Especially it is focused on residents' life that has been hardly talked about due to the difficulty of contacting with them. What they have told is engraved with many traces of struggle to take back their own lives. Looking carefully into it, actually they have rarely talked about the sufferings from the disease itself. They have not fought against the disease. They have fought against an outside pressure to try to determine their lives by naming them as "Hansen's disease sufferer." For that very reason, they now talk about themselves as "former Hansen's disease sufferer." They make their sayings vivid by going back to the point when they were labeled and reviving memories from there. The voices from there should keep retaining a power to criticize in recognizing historical facts of the unreasonable quarantine.
著者
石原 俊
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.13, pp.1-33, 2005-12-25

In the 19^<th> Century the Ogasawara/Bonin Islands were the center of the automatic life world in the Northwestern Pacific Ocean called "Japan Ground" by the seamen and whalers. From 1830 to 1875 the settlers of the Ogasawara Islands came from all parts of the world. They contacted and traded with whalers who stopped at these islands. In 1875 "the Empire of Japan" began to occupy these islands and these settlers were naturalized to "Japanese", but these people named "kikajin"(meaning naturalized people) re-arranged and kept their automatic life world. They kept trading with "foreign" seamen who stopped at these Islands. After 1870's they were employed as hunters by the "foreign" schooners to the Sea of Okhotsk for fur-seal hunting every year, often "violating" the border of "Russia" or "Japan". Under such condition the Ogasawara Islands and the life world of the settlers attracted the attention of the politicians, economists, journalists and explorers in "the Empire of Japan" in 1880's and 1890's. The oceans and islands in "Japan Ground" were named "Nan-yo"(meaning the southern ocean of "the Empire of Japan"). They "found" the Ogasawara Islands the center or the strongpoint of the oceans and islands in "Nan-yo" and the very model of the development of "Nan-yo". About that time the key word of the discourses and practices on "Nan-yo" was "Jiyu-koueki"(meaning free trade). Before the occupation of "the Empire of Japan" the Ogasawara Islands and "Japan Ground" had been focused by "the British Empire"(e.g. Rutherford Alcock), the United States of America(e.g. Matthew Perry) and the Tokugawa Regime(e.g. "John Mung") as the proving ground of the development based on the principle of "free trade". After the occupation the Ogasawara Islands came to be regarded as the strongpoint and the model of "Nan-yo" by the discourses and practices which supported "Jiyu-koueki"(e.g. Ukichi Taguchi, Tohru Hattori and Han-emon Tamaki). Such discourses and practices supported utilizing the life world around "kikajin(s)" in the Ogasawara Islands, especially their automatic and border-transgressing practices. They promoted the development of the Ogasawara Islands and "Nan-yo" through the "free" trading and colonizing without strong sovereign or military power. However in 1900's the development of the Ogasawara Islands became the big undertaking accompanied with the strong sovereign power and the large budget of "the Empire of Japan". The "Ogasawara-sima En-yo Gyogyo Kaisha"(meaning "the Ogasawara Islands Pelagic Fishery Company") which was founded and backed up by the local agency of "the Empire of Japan" took the initiative in this undertaking. Moreover the company began to appropriate the life world around "kikajin(s)". In 1910 the naturalized people in the Ogasawara Islands repelled the local agency to defend their automatic life world. "Nan-yo" was "found" the ideal proving ground of the development based on the principle of "free trade", and/but "Nan-yo" was the critical point of such development. This critical point was the inevitable and immanent result of "the imperialism of free trade"(by J. Gallagher & R. Robinson).
著者
近森 高明
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.7, pp.193-208, 1999-12-25

This article deals with two epidemics, "shinkeisuijaku (neurasthenia)" and "noiroze (neuroses)", the former spread over Japan from early years of this century (c. 1905-1930s), and the latter after World War II (c. 1955-1980s). By focusing on the difference between two views of the apparently same disease, I attempt to demonstrate how the humanistic=psychological perspective, which prepared for "mental problems" of today, has prevailed among lay figures after World War II. Citing a lot of discourses concerning "shinkeisuijaku" and "noiroze", I try to show how the two diseases were understood by lay figures. "Shinkeisuijaku" was thought to result from the strain of nerves, caused by the high pressure of civilization. It attacked especially on "brain workers", and on men more than women. It was considered not as a mental process but a physiological process that caused such symptoms as headache, insomnia and depressing mental state. In contrast, "noiroze" was understood as a mental or psychological process, so that symptoms similar to "shinkeisuijaku" are considered to result from some kind of mental conflict. The cases of "noiroze" were described with such humanistic terms as "personality", "human relationships", "life history", etc. What distinguishes the view on "noiroze" can be called humanistic=psychological perspective, which prevailed with the epidemic of the disease. From this perspective, our sufferings are always interpreted as mental one. Today we notice people suffering from "mental problem" more than ever, which shows us how wide and deep the perspective has prevailed over us.
著者
森田 次朗
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.13, pp.127-136, 2005-12-25
著者
岡崎 宏樹
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.6, pp.1-21, 1998-12-25

Confronted with so shocking a event which gives too extraordinarily intense impression, one will lose self-control. Such experience, sometimes so delightful, sometimes so sorrowful, can change one's personalty fundamentally. What does the shock bring about? How does the experience of the shock have its overwhelming influence on a person? Where is the person whom the shock left its mark on destined to go? In order to throw light on these questions, I would like to examine the phenomenon called psychological trauma. It is not the aim of this paper to define the trauma or to examine many psychotherapies which are designed to remend it, but to examine how traumatic events occur just to get some clues to an understanding of extraordinarily intense experiences, where one may find some suggestive conclusion for sociological studies. For this purpose Sigmund Freud's Project For a Scientific Psychology is, which tries to explain all the psychological phenomena with its original neuron theory, is examined. It seems to give us no less remarkable theory to understand psychological trauma than his later writings. In fact Project itself does not refer to the trauma. Nevertheless the concept of Pain in Project seems to be full of suggestions if we regard it as one that means the traumatic event. For instance it shows that the peak of Pain namely the moment when such events are the most intense cannot be memorized in normal way. It implies the impossibility of the complete recovery which psychotherapy that attaches great importance to remembrance of traumatic experience supposes to attain. Project model can explain the reason. It also shows that the anxiety which derived from experience of Pain can establish the system of ego. In the second part of this article, what the phenomenon called recovery from trauma means will be considered, by examining, from the standpoint of the neuron theory of Project, the play of a child who experienced traumatic situation. In the study of the trauma we find many sorts of repetition. The dreams of those suffering traumatic neurosis repeat the same scene of traumatic situations. Those patients sometimes repeat the same traumatic situation as they had experienced before in the actual stuation : it is called acting-out. While, the child repeats the play which seems to express the traumatic situation. I will examine the different levels of these repetitions and show the significance of creative repetition of the play of the child, which seems to imply the possibility of impossibile recovery.
著者
西川 知亨
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.7, pp.259-266, 1999-12-25
著者
Cassegard Carl
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.9, pp.75-91, 2001-12-25

In this article I investigate the relation of boredom to the experiences of "shock" and "nature" (or "naturalization") in Walter Benjamin and Murakami Ryu. Nature is the semblance of timeless givenness in a taken for granted order of things, whereas shock is the break-up of this natural order. Just as shock is an ambivalent experience - not only destructive but also liberating - so naturalization gives rise to conflicting strategies. In this article I seek to throw light on these strategies by focusing on the role of boredom, first in the "shocking" modernity depicted by Benjamin, then in the "naturalized" modernity in Murakami Ryu. Benjamin depicts modernity as a "hell" characterized by a "dialectic of the new and eversame" in which people develop a "heightened consciousness" that serves as a "protective shield" against the shocks of everyday life but which also leads to the disintegration of "aura". Benjamin describes the boredom that springs from the experience of a world drained of aura as "spleen". Spleen, in other words, is not a boredom that stems from the absence of shocks or of stimuli, but on the contrary a boredom that is fuelled by an excess of shocks. In this respect it is similar to the bored indifference of what Simmel calls the "blase attitude". Although Benjamin regards modernity as a "hell", he rejects the nostalgic attempt to resurrect the aura - as seen above all in fascism - since such an attempt would be caught in the "law that effort produces its opposite". Thus fascism is driven towards war, the greatest shock of all. Benjamin choses instead a strategy of "waiting", a "tactile" getting used to the shocks and the reification of the nightmare of modernity in order to discover the dialectics of awakening within it. The boredom seen in much contemporary fiction is of a fundamentally different kind, springing not from a shocking but a naturalized world. This boredom can be affirmed, as in Okazaki Kyoko, Yoshimoto Banana or Murakami Haruki. Murakami Ryu, however, "wages war on boredom" (Shimada Masahiko) in the attempt to resurrect the experience of shock. Although his fiction abounds in seemingly shocking or nauseating episodes, these shocks are never simply given as part of experience itself, as the shocks characteristic of the modernity depicted by Benjamin, but consciously produced in order to resist naturalization. The paradox of this attempt to resurrect shock, however, is analogous to that of resurrecting the aura : the effect produced is the opposite of the intended. Thus Murakami Ryu enables us to study how the efforts to combat naturalization themselves become naturalized, i. e. part of the boring everyday. In Murakami Haruki, we can see a diametrically opposed strategy resembling Benjamin's attitude of "waiting" and passively immersing oneself in the experience of the present-the one significant difference being that while this experience was shock for Benjamin it is rather naturalization for Murakami Haruki. If Murakami Haruki represents a basic acceptance of naturalization that still seems to be waiting for something new, then Murakami Ryu represents a basic revolt against naturalization that acknowledges its own futility. In the former, we see the mute expectation that new shocks will arise through his affirmation of nature. In the latter, the grim foreboding that he will get mired down in nature through his pursuit of shock.
著者
島岡 哉
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.12, pp.199-217, 2004-12-25

The purpose of this study is to analyze how people experienced so-called "traveling theatres (idou-eiga)" in contemporary Japan. For this purpose. I have interviewed members of a cinema promotion company, "Cinema You" in Nagoya city in Aichi prefecture. Also, I worked as a staff at one of the screenings of the traveling theatres. Based on these ethnographic data, the screenings of this company will be investigated. Since traveling theatres are usually regarded as a relic of a bygone age, they have rarely been examined in former cultural studies or media studies. In this study, other important aspects of traveling theatres will be discussed. By focusing on the time and space in which ordinary people watched films, the multiplicity of the meanings of the traveling theatres will be presented.
著者
鎌田 大資
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.2, pp.97-113, 1994-12-25

In the sociology of mental health, the ex-patients' rehabilitation has been long thought to be impossible. But this proved to be wrong in the light of the results of mental-health-policy reforms in U. S. A., U. K., Canada, Italy and other nations. In Japanese notorious mental health care, medical practice was said to be the same as farmers' management business to keep domestic animals (patients) in order to make profits in the meadow of health-insurance systems. But, by many people's efforts, the support for the rehabilitation of the mentally disabled are at last burgeoning. In this paper, I examined the earliest trial-and-error case. The protagonist could successfully "rehabilitate" after 15 years' efforts. For the frame of interpretations, I made use of N. K. Denzin's concept of Epiphany; the "moment of problematic experience that illuminates personal character, and often signifies a turning point in a person's life". This biography was written by a Psychiatric Social Worker, and may be not wholly qualified as a good exemplar of "thick description" labelled as "relational-interactional" or "descriptive-contextual". But, we can still look it over for some rarely mentioned facts. The main Epiphanies for the protagonist was that he could not work in town as a normal person because of the sub-effects of medication and hospitalization. Facing total loss of confidence, he could not stay out of hospital without other encouraging Epiphanies. Various social resources were no use for him to regain the will to autonomous living. The best remedy was neither medications nor professional care, but self-help-groups like gatherings of his hospital fellows. Under the total denial of mental patients' human rights, the PSWs, if having a good ear, were the only hope for systems reform which enhance ex-patients' group formation. Their Interpretations of biographies were vital in that vein.
著者
田野 大輔
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.5, pp.123-150, 1997-12-25

In diesem Aufsatz geht es um die kulturelle Reichweite der Motorisierung im Dritten Reich. Den kulturpolitischen Grundzug des Nationalsozialismus hat J. Herf als >>Reaktionare Modernitat<< charakterisiert, d. h. als Mischung von reaktionarer Politik und technischer Modernitat. Aber dieser Begriff ist irrefuhrend, weil sich die Haltung der Nationalsozialisten zur Modernitat nicht einfach als >>reaktionar<< definieren laBt. Eher sollte man den an sich ambivalenten Charakter der Moderne, der von D. Peukert als >>Janusgesicht des Modernisierungsprozesses<< gekennzeichnet worden ist, zur Diskussion stellen, um das Wesen des Nationalsozialismus zu erklaren. Daruber hinaus soll hier klargemacht werden, daB sich Hitlers Diktatur auf diese ambivalente Modernitat stutzte, die das deutsche Volk bis zum Zusammenbruch des Dritten Reiches faszinierte und nicht zuletzt im Autobahnbau und im Volkswagenprojekt ihren Niederschlag fand. Hitler trat mit dem Ziel an, eine motorisierte volksgemeinschaft zu schaffen. Er gelobte, auch dem deutschen Arbeiter zu einem Wagen, dem Symbol der Modernitat, zu verhelfen und damit die spannungsgeladene Distanz zwischen den Schichten auszugleichen. Das war eine lockende VerheiBung der NS-Zukunft. Der >>Fuhrer<< betrachtete das Automobil und andere Technologien als Mittel der Herrschaft, als >>elan vital<< des neuen faschistischen Menschen. Das AutobewuBtsein des Dritten Reiches ist daher wohl als >>stahlerne Romantik<< zu kennzeichnen, wie Goebbels es nannte. Hier laBt sich die Ambivalenz der nationalsozialistischen Modernitat ganz klar erkennen, d. h. die Synthese von technologischem Fortschritt und diktatorischem Herrschaftsanspruch. Die Reichsautobahnen, >>die StraBen des Fuhrers<<, sollten nicht nur >>Pyramiden des Reiches<< sein, sondern auch Symbol der Einheit der Nation, der raumliche Ausdruck der Gleichschaltung. Hier spiegelte sich die ganz moderne Vision einer integrierten Gesellschaft, der die Nationalsozialisten nur ihren eigenen Ausdruck gaben. Daruber hinaus sollten die Autobahnen nach Auffassung von F. Todt >>Kunstwerk<< sein, das den Versuch darstellte, Technik und Kultur zu versohnen und die NS-Ideologie in Stahl, Stein und Beton zu materialisieren. Wahrend aber die NS-Kunst grundsatzlich technologiefrei war, mit Ausnahme der Autobahnen, sah Hitler den Volkswagen eher im Kontext des Massenkonsums. Der Volkswagen sollte ein solides Gebrauchsgut sein und daher in seinem Design Einfachheit, Bescheidenheit, Zuverlassigkeit und Sparsamkeit darstellen. Bei seiner Stromlinienform, die die Geschwindigkeit formal zum Ausdruck brachte, ging es darum, den technologischen Fortschritt und die Modernitat des Regimes zu symbolisieren. Im Gegensatz zur Kunst, wo mit der Ausrottung der >>entarteten<< Kunst Modernitat nicht mehr thematisiert wurde, trat in der Autowerbung jedoch der moderne Massenkonsum als Hauptthema auf, in dem sich die Sehnsucht des Volkes nach einem bewegteren, individuelleren Leben widerspiegelte. Der Nationalsozialismus verstarkte also die Tendenzen zur Massenkonsumgesellschaft, denn die atomisierte Masse kam ihm hochst gelegen. Zusammenfassend laBt sich sagen, daB der Wille zur Motorisierung im Dritten Reich wohl als das >>Janusgesicht<< der Modernitat zu charakterisieren ist. Problematisch ist nur die Bewertung dieser Ambivalenz. Dieser ambivalente Charakter eignet sich nicht als Erklarungsmodell fur Verschleierungspraktiken oder Lugenhaftigkeit des Nationalsozialismus. Im Gegenteil zielten die Nationalsozialisten selbst auf einen Fortschritt in Harmonie und Ordnung, die Versohnung von Moderne und Kultur. Unverkennbar ist allerdings, daB diese Vision an sich im hochsten Grade modern ist. Man kann sogar die archaischen Elemente der NS-Kultur als Ausdruck der Modernisierungstriebkraft interpretieren, weil es ein ganz moderner Verhaltenskodex ist, zur ideologischen Legitimierung alte Symbole zu benutzen. Letztlich handelt es sich um die Durchmischung von progressiven und regressiven Tenden
著者
石田 あゆう
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.8, pp.31-50, 2000

The image of people usually have of the female consumer today is the one of a buying cosmetics and clothes. However, originally female consumers were associated with housewives. Both images reflect the deep relation women had their home, in addition to increasing role women played throughout the process of social modernization. The aim of this article is to examine the Japanese magazine, "Fujin Sekai" ("Women's world"), one of the first mass magazines for women. I would like to clarify the image of the housewife whose main activities are cooking and shopping as an ideal and as an active female consumer at the same time. Nowadays to go to the supermarket to buy some food every day represents an important task for housewives. But in early modern Japan, shopping was unusual activity for women in general, as it was reserved to professionals like maids or cooks. Cooking was not a daily work for some women. I examined some articles about women cooking that Murai Gensai, a famous novelist of the Meiji Era, wrote on "Fujin Sekai".
著者
田野 大輔
出版者
京都大学
雑誌
京都社会学年報 : KJS
巻号頁・発行日
vol.3, pp.57-76, 1995-12-25

This study surveys the historical debate on the character of the Third Reich and analyzes the mechanism of the "polycracy" in this regime. In former period Hitler's state appeared to be a rational and well-organized system of a totalitarian nature, but subsequent historical research has revealed a more complex picture. The traditional view as propounded by K. D. Bracher and others was criticized by the "functionalist" school of M. Broszat and H. Mommsen, who drew attention to the disorganized character of the regime. The political system, they insisted, was by no means totalitarian but rather chaotic : a ruthless competition and rivalry among the various institutions for power and influence. Amplifying this view, I proceed to apply the concept of "polycracy" to the power structure of the Third Reich. The polycratic structure of the NS regime composed of more than one power center contrasted strikingly with the totalitarian and monocratic nature of the ideology. This study places special emphasis on this peculiar ambivalence, on the dynamic interaction between ideology and organization. In the main part of this article, I examine the constituents of the Nazi ideology, namely the concepts of "Volksgemeinschaft", "Fuhrer" and "Kampf", so as to show that nothing but these factors gave rise to the polycracy in the Third Reich. I also show that the polycratic structure of the regime helped to consolidate and enhance Hitler's power. There is no contradiction between his supreme power and a polycratic and altogether disintegrated system of government : both conditioned and enforced one another. This mechanism of "polycracy", however, developed a momentum of its own which it was difficult to control, and sparked off the energy of destruction and ultimately of self-destruction too. In conclusion, I insist that this process of "cumulative radicalization" which ended in total war and genocide should not be portrayed as the work of a deliberate dictatorial will, but rather as the consequences of the polycracy, of the way in which political power was organized in this regime. The historical assessment of the Third Reich cannot conveniently be reduced to the role of Hitler who is a singular phenomenon unlikely to re-emerge in the future. The conditions and structure which allowed him to gain overall control of a modern society have not changed that much and are therefore a more worthwhile topic for further scrutiny.