Just as we finish this course, the classic documentary Shoah by Claude Lanzmann, first issued in 1985, is being re-screened in New York. The New York Times has an interview with Lanzmann, in which he explains why he thinks the term “Holocaust” is misleading and why he dislikes films such as Life is Beautiful and Schindler’s List, among other topics.
For those of you who missed it in class on Monday, here is a study sheet for the final exam next Monday.
GAH2119 Final Study Sheet
Here’s a link to Marion Hussong’s site about the Austrian author Franz Kain
Here’s a first stab at it. We can discuss modifications.
Web Resource Presentations
Almost every week you’ll find something about the Nazi era in some newspaper somewhere. This week, the British newspaper has a story that drifts into the “weird stuff people will believe about the Nazis” territory. Were the Nazis developing a UFO to attack London and New York? Read and see what you think.
I will admit to doubting that the photo is really evidence of a UFO rather than a weirdly designed tank.
The magnitude of the war and of the horrors of the holocaust overwhelmed artists’ efforts to convey them. The cultural theorist Theodor Adorno claimed that after Auschwitz, writing poetry would be barbaric.
One writer who directly confronted the holocaust while it was happening was the German-speaking Romanian-Jewish poet Paul Celan. Celan’s parents died in the German forced labor system, while Paul himself was held in concentration camps in Romania. He began writing his meditation on the holocaust during the last year of the war and eventually published it in German in 1947.
Here is a link to the poem in English:
Death Fugue in English
If you can read German, it is worthwhile reading it in German too.
Death Fugue in German
And here is an audio file of Paul Celan himself reading the poem in German
If you type “Paul Celan” and “Todesfuge” in Youtube you will find that many Germans have produced mashups that link Celan’s reading to images of the concentration camps.