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Myths and Legends: World War II and Blitzkrieg

Ended Jan 26, 2021

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Full course description


*November 23, 2020


4 Weeks






*Course is self-paced, but instructors will be engaging with learners between November 23, 2020 and January 25, 2020

Myths and Legends: World War II and Blitzkrieg:

The idea of “Blitzkrieg,” a term never utilized by Germany's military commanders, has come to define the reasons for the Wehrmacht’s success during the Second World War. This continuing education course, launched in collaboration with the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, explores the evolution of military thinking in Germany, in comparison with the Soviet Union, and the reasons behind the Wehrmacht’s success on the field of battle. Through a discussion of the interwar period, the numerous testing grounds that witnessed how these armies waged war, and the only time that Germany implemented a Blitzkrieg strategy, Operation Barbarossa, scholars from ASU and the National WWII Museum will discuss how some of the myths and legends associated with Blitzkrieg developed and the reality behind Germany’s successes and failures during the Second World War.

Discover myths and legends associated with Blitzkrieg:

This course is online and self-paced and is comprised of oral histories and short videos, interactive learning objects, and artifacts from the Museum's collection. In-course activities will include discussion forums and interactions with faculty members, including questions and answers.

Modules include:
  1. Module 1: The Interwar Period - The Birth of Blitzkrieg
  2. Module 2: Military Testing Ground
  3. Module 3: Myths and Legends
  4. Module 4: Blitzkrieg in Action

Who is this course designed for:

Life-long learners, K-12 teachers looking to better understand World War II and Blitzkrieg.

What you'll receive:

Certificate of completion

Course details:

Enrollment for this course will close January 4, 2021. Interested in giving this course as a gift? Purchase your gift here or contact for any questions. 



Call 1-844-353-7856 to speak with an enrollment coach about this course.


Meet the Instructors

Yan Mann, PhD

Yan Mann is a Clinical Assistant Professor of History and the Program Lead of the online World War II Studies master’s degree program at Arizona State University. He was born in Chernovtsy, Ukraine and studied history at St. John's University, where he earned a bachelor's and master's degree. He spent a year in Moscow, Russia doing research on a Fulbright grant and received his doctorate at Arizona State University. His research revolves around the relationship between individual and collective memory of the Great Patriotic War, the Stalin cult, censorship, propaganda, and the production of the war’s first official history during Khrushchev’s thaw. He specializes in the Second World War and the Soviet Union.

Volker Benkert, PhD

Volker Benkert studied history and English at the Universities of Bonn, Edinburgh, St. Petersburg, and Fribourg. He graduated with a master's degree from the University of Bonn and a doctorate from the University of Potsdam. His research focuses on the impact of sudden regime change on biographies in 20th century Germany and Europe. In addition to relying on traditional sources, he utilizes extended biographical interviews. Furthermore, he is interested in the formation and function of discourses on the totalitarian past on an individual and collective level. Identifying pervasive discourse patterns particularly among ordinary Germans helps to reveal the transmission of often apologetic views of the past over generations.

Benkert teaches upper-division courses in modern German and European history as well as the Western Civilization and Global History surveys. He also offers several capstone classes such as the HST498 History, Memory and National Myths: Changing European Master-Narratives of World War II. Finally, he conducts Individualized Studies projects with interested students on issues in German and German-Jewish history.

Robert Citino, PhD

Robert is The National WWII Museum’s Samuel Zemurray Stone Senior Historian. He is an award-winning military historian and scholar who has published 10 books, including The Wehrmacht Retreats: Fighting a Lost War, 1943; Death of the Wehrmacht: The German Campaigns of 1942; and The German Way of War: From the Thirty Years' War to the Third Reich as well as numerous articles covering World War II and 20th-century military history. He speaks widely and contributes regularly to general readership magazines such as World War II.

Dr. Citino enjoys close ties with the US military establishment, and taught one year at the US Military Academy at West Point and two years at the US Army War College. He also was Professor of History at North Texas University, Lake Erie College, and Eastern Michigan University. He has won numerous teaching awards and was voted the #1 professor in the United States on in 2007.