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Performing the Nation: Sports, Spectacles, and Aesthetics in Germany, 1926–1936

Rossol, N (2010) 'Performing the Nation: Sports, Spectacles, and Aesthetics in Germany, 1926–1936.' Central European History, 43 (4). pp. 616-638. ISSN 0008-9389

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Abstract

National Socialist propaganda has created an aesthetic legacy that is difficult to shake off. Filmic images of well-trained athletes preparing for the Berlin Olympics or mass scenes from Nazi Party rallies have become familiar features in history documentaries. While many of us lack personal memories of the Third Reich, we think we know what Nazism looked like. In addition, Walter Benjamin's concept stressing the use of aesthetics in politics has become commonplace in interpretations of Nazi representation. "Gesamtkunstwerk of political aesthetics" or "formative aesthetics" are terms used to analyze festivities and spectacles in the Third Reich, suggesting that the Nazis developed a specific style with a focus on aesthetics, symbols, and festive set-up. This allegedly distinctive Nazi style is emphasized even more by contrasting it favorably with celebrations of the Weimar Republic. Once again, the German republican experience is placed in "the antechamber of the Third Reich."

Item Type: Article
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities
Faculty of Humanities > History, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 13 Sep 2011 16:03
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2022 00:35
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/622

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