Pang Hsieh Loong, Marcus
Volkswagen: Das Auto and its political impact.
One can be forgiven for overlooking the categories of cars when asked about politics in one’s country – they seemed too commonplace and mundane to be considered anything political. In the mainstream thought, cars are a means of transportation, to travel from one point to another. Some conservationists may argue on the environmental agenda, while others may think of cars as one of the main industries driving the economy. Nothing more is thought of these mean machines that move the world. Yet, the history cars possess has political backgrounds, given that they were considered technological advancements in their early days.
Using Volkswagen as the main case study, this paper will examine cars in a political-visual aspect and the impact they have on the people through the ages. It will also consider the consequences of the car – the economical impact by the car industry, environmental impact by the car and the different law and policies enacted for the car and the users. Last but not least, the iconic Volkswagen Beetle will be featured and explained on its influence on the lives of many. As this paper attempts to cover a lot of ground, the focus will be on the impact by Volkswagen on the world.
The History of Volkswagen
The Führer addressed the nation on the Volkswagen.
It is understood that the term ‘Volkswagen’ was a brainchild of Adolf Hitler, the Führer of the Nazi Germany. However, what is less understood is how Volkswagen came about. The supposed ‘People’s Car’ was more than political rhetoric; it was a determination in Hitler’s political ambitions to provide the car to the masses in a time where the Car was out of reach and seemingly for the elite. Although there were cars from the rival companies, like the Mercedes 170H, the Volkswagen was a car company started off from scratch, fueled by the designs by the Chief Designer, Dr. Ferdinand Porsche.
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