Nazi Policies Towards the Jews 1933-37

Boycott of Shops

On the 1st of April, 1933 the Nazi regime imposed a boycott of Jewish shops and businesses. Hitler claimed that this was retaliation against Jews in Germany and abroad who had called for a boycott of German goods. Goebbels organized an intensive propaganda campaign to maximize the impact, which was manned by SA soldiers. Shops were the main target of the boycott, but it also applied to Jewish professionals. The boycott made a big public impact and featured prominently in news coverage in Germany and foreign countries, but it was not an unqualified success. It was difficult to justify what counted as a Jewish business, which had foreign creditors or were ungermane own. The boycott was abandoned after one day.

1933Civil Service Laws

In April 1933 the Nazis’ introduced laws that dismissed choose from the civil service. It was more complicated than expected as they had no objective, scientific definition of who was racially Jewish according to physical characteristics of blood group. Another difficulty was the President Hindenburg insisted on exemptions for German Jews who had served during world war one and for those whose fathers had been killed in the war. The civil service law had a devastating economic and psychological impact of middle class Jews in Germany and contributed to the increasing levels of Jewish emigration.


There was further anti Semitic legislation in 1933 the law against overcrowding of German schools and universities restricted the number of Jewish children who could attend state schools and universities. NAZI propaganda stressed the danger that a well educated you would be a greater threat to Germany than an uneducated one. German children were being told that their former friends and classmates were unworthy of being in the same schools of them. However not all Jewish children were forced out of state schools at this point. The process was not completed until 1938, and Jewish children could also still attend private education and Jewish schools. Jewish schools were also one that of the few places way Jewish teachers could find work.

Doctors and Lawyers

More than 10 per cent of German doctors were Jews. They were attacked by propaganda as a danger to German Society, and some local authorities started removing Jewish doctors from their posts. The regime was pushed along by these local initiatives and banned Jewish doctors in 841933. In theory Jewish doctors could now only treat Jewish patients, but many carried on their normal practice for several years. The exclusion of lawyers was more gradual.

The Press

In October 1933 the press law enabled the regime to apply strict censorship and to close down publications they disliked. Jews had a prominent role in journalism and publishing, and with this law they were effectively silenced.

1935Nuremberg Laws

In 1935 the Nazis’ extended the antisemitic legislation through the Nuremberg laws announced at the national party rally at Nuremberg. Some radicals felt that the persecution of Jews had not gone far enough, and these radicals were the driving force behind the demands for anti Jewish legislation. The Nuremberg laws were Hitler’s way of dealing once and for all with Jewish bolshevism. It classified exactly what was meant by two and other non Aryans and it made marriage between Aryans and non Aryans illegal.