Speaking the unspeakable

  • This article discusses the filmic representation of the infamous Wannsee Conference, when fifteen senior German officials met at a villa on the shore of a Berlin lake to discuss and co-ordinate the implementation of the so-called final solution to the Jewish question. The understanding reached during the course of the ninety-minute meeting cleared the way for the Europe-wide killing of six million Jews. The article sets out to answer the principal challenge facing anyone attempting to recreate the Wannsee Conference on film: what was the atmosphere of this conference and the attitude of the participants? Moreover, it discusses various ethical aspects related to the portrayal of evil, not in actions but in words, using the medium of film. In doing so, it focuses on the BBC/HBO television film Conspiracy (2001), directed by Frank Pierson, probing its historical accuracy and discussing its artistic credibility.

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Author:Alex J. KayGND
Parent Title (German):Postprints der Universität Potsdam Philosophische Reihe
Subtitle (English):the portrayal of the Wannsee Conference in the film Conspiracy
Series (Serial Number):Postprints der Universität Potsdam : Philosophische Reihe (162)
Document Type:Postprint
Date of first Publication:2019/09/11
Year of Completion:2019
Publishing Institution:Universität Potsdam
Release Date:2019/09/11
Tag:Holocaust; Jewish question; Nazi Germany; Wannsee conference; film
Source:Holocaust Studies (2019) DOI: 10.1080/17504902.2019.1637492
Organizational units:Philosophische Fakultät
Dewey Decimal Classification:2 Religion / 29 Andere Religionen / 290 Andere Religionen
3 Sozialwissenschaften / 32 Politikwissenschaft / 320 Politikwissenschaft
Peer Review:Referiert
Publication Way:Open Access
Grantor:Taylor & Francis Open Access Agreement
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung, Nicht kommerziell, Keine Bearbeitung 4.0 International