The Father Of Poison Gas - Fritz Haber

His scientific work led to millions of deaths in gas attacks during World War I and in the concentration camps of World War II. Yet, Fritz Haber's innovations in crop fertilizer also helped feed the world. Haber's complicated story prompts discussion among budding historians about the new instruments of death in the Great War. 

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas

  • Use the video to prompt debate on the ethics of chemical weapons
  • Offer the biography as research on changes in weaponry during World War I
Classroom Considerations

  • Part of Who Did What in World War I? video biography series
  • Photographs of chemical attacks and concentration camp victims may not be suitable for some students
Pros

  • Engaging narrator places Haber's story within the larger context of World War I
  • Intriguing photographs of the period engage learners' curiosity
  • Quotes from Haber illustrate the complexities of his work and stimulate debate
Cons

  • Details of chemistry may lose some young scholars
Common Core