Kriegsliteratur von Frauen? Zur Darstellung des zweiten Weltkriegs in Autobiographien von Frauen nach 1960

TitleKriegsliteratur von Frauen? Zur Darstellung des zweiten Weltkriegs in Autobiographien von Frauen nach 1960
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsMahr, Cordula
Number of Pages512
PublisherCentaurus Verlag

How do German women portray the Second World War? The examination of women's war narratives has been lacking in German-language German studies up to now. (World) war literature is primarily understood as the memoir literature of former soldiers. On the basis of 70 autobiographies of German women who were not persecuted, this study shows that a broad tradition of female war experience exists and offers a first inventory of this philologically largely unexplored "war literature by women". The spectrum of authors ranges from professional writers such as Christa Wolf and Eva Zeller to actresses and politicians to unknown contemporary witnesses. Only independent publications after 1960 were taken into account. On this basis, not only does a differentiated picture of women's specific wartime experiences emerge, such as air raids, lack of supplies, or fear of rape; it can also be examined to what extent the subsequent knowledge of National Socialist crimes influences the memory of one's own life story, to what extent one's own history of suffering is confronted with a history of participation (Thürmer-Rohr). The analysis combines results of oral history and feminist social science with a socio-hermeneutic approach and genre and narrative models of Lejeune and Genette. 

Translated TitleWar Literature by Women? On the Representation of the Second World War in Autobiographies by Women after 1960
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