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The book The War for Legitimacy in Politics and Culture 1936-1946 is the first investigation into how the phenomenon of political legitimacy operated within Europe's political cultures during the Second World War. 

German soldier in Denmark putting up a poster ordering the local population to respect German commands (1940)

Researcher: prof. dr. Peter Romijn
Duration: 2000-2006
Publication: The war on legitimacy in politics and culture 1936-1946 (Oxford; Berg 2008). 
Cooperation: ESF-project ‘The Impact of National-Socialist and Fascist Occupation in Europe, 1939-1945’

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Amidst the upheavals of that turbulent period in Europe's 20th-century history, a wide variety of contenders for power emerged, each of which claimed to possess the right to rule.

Exploring political discourse, state propaganda, and high and low culture, the book argues that legitimacy lay not with rulers, and still less in the barrel of a gun, but in the values behind differing approaches to good government.

An important contribution to the study of the political culture of European history from the 1930s to the 1950s, this volume will be essential reading for both political scientists and 20th-century historians.