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Veit HarlanThe Life and Work of a Nazi Filmmaker$
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Frank Noack

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813167008

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813167008.001.0001

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In the Ruins of the Reich

In the Ruins of the Reich

Chapter:
(p.255) 20 In the Ruins of the Reich
Source:
Veit Harlan
Author(s):

Frank Noack

Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
DOI:10.5810/kentucky/9780813167008.003.0021

This chapter deals with the immediate postwar situation in Germany and Veit Harlan’s attempts to restart his career. He tries to line up favorable testimonies by friends and colleagues and does get some, which may influence those Allied officers who categorize him as a simple fellow traveler, but public opinion is against him. His wife, Kristina Söderbaum, gives her belated debut as a stage actress because no film offers materialize, even attempting Shakespeare despite a lack of training. During several performances, audiences who are aware that Harlan has directed her work throw rotten vegetables at the same woman they adored a few years earlier. Instead of keeping a low profile, Harlan and Söderbaum visit the Hamburg opening of Ehe im Schatten (Marriage in the Shadows, 1947), a film based on the life of actor Joachim Gottschalk, who committed suicide with his Jewish wife, and so create a scandal by their mere presence. Legal activities against Harlan increase, leading to an official prosecution for crimes against humanity.

Keywords:   crimes against humanity, favorable testimonies, fellow traveler, postwar Germany, prosecution, Joachim Gottschalk

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