Nazis considered Slavs as non-Aryans, but did Nazi linguists classified the Slavic languages as "non-Indo-European"?

What was the Nazi theory about historical linguistics?

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    If you can read German, you might be interested in Κ. D. Seemann Die slavistische Forschung an der Freien Universität Berlin about the Slavistic chair of the FU. I didn't read it, so I can't summarize.
    – vectory
    Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 22:44
  • 1
    @vectory I can read German and I have access to the reference because our University library has a subscription (otherwise, it is pay-walled). But the reference says nothing relevant to the original question. Commented Mar 8, 2019 at 14:38
  • @jknappen I'm sorry then I don't remember which artikel about Vasmer and the FU had at least one line about the Nazis and how it was unusual that he could keep going.
    – vectory
    Commented Mar 9, 2019 at 16:28

2 Answers 2


The Nazi theory, as summarized here, is not about language relations, it is a claim about genetics, and apparently Hitler was inspired by theories of Hans Günther. This book studies Nazi linguistics, and chapter 2 may be useful in tracking what was said in Nazi-dominated linguistics. I think that the racial theories are primary and linguistics follows that, which explains why Finns are classified as racial Aryans, and Slavs and Romani are in the "subhuman" class. That is, you can be a "racial outsider" relative to the language that you speak.

  • Finns were initially discriminated against, later they were considered honorary Aryans. Until 1960 they not even were considered "white".
    – Sorb
    Commented Mar 6, 2019 at 20:55
  • Chapter 9 seems to be the relevant one for the relation between race and language
    – b a
    Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 11:13

Nazism is primarily a political ideology. So it's a bit difficult to speak of "Nazi linguists" and historical linguistics is more an alibi than a theory, from a Nazi point of view. You can find more information here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustaf_Kossinna

  • This is so wrong. Nazis wanted to revolutionize everything, not just politics.
    – Sorb
    Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 10:09
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    Sorb is right here. There were even Deutsche Physik "German physics" (mainly a failure) and Deutsche Mathematik "German mathematics" (with Teichmüller as an mathematically excellent proponent) Commented Mar 7, 2019 at 12:56

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