reviewing a recent book on the German 1890s through the rise of the Nazis:
Martin Duberman, in his recent “novel/history” Jews Queers Germans, rarely describes clothing. He describes, instead, physical attractiveness—the role of sex appeal in history. Admiration for male physical beauty shapes the lives and beliefs of all his heroes and, by the end, two of his villains. Describing the social status granted by bodies instead of by clothes also perfectly illustrates one of Duberman’s subjects: the final defeat of conservatism and the violent twin birth of individualism and collectivism. Person replaces office, desire replaces role; will replaces order.