This chapter deals with Veit Harlan’s family background, the Harlans having French Huguenot roots. Walter Harlan, Veit Harlan’s father, comes from an upper-class family and is supposed to follow in his banker-lawyer father’s footsteps when he quits his own law studies in order to become a poet. Adele Harlan, Veit Harlan’s mother, is the illegitimate child of a chambermaid named Rebecca Boothby, who was possibly Jewish, and an unknown father who was possibly Gypsy. The first two children by Walter and Adele Harlan are illegitimate themselves. To the young Veit Harlan, his parents’ ethnical origins are less important than the social ones. As a filmmaker, he will repeatedly portray young women who are haunted by their past and whose unhappy and poor mother died young. Despite his solid income, Walter Harlan suffers from a lack of recognition as an artist.
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