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Psychoanalysis, Culture & Society

, Volume 23, Issue 1, pp 97–114 | Cite as

‘Screen confessions’: A fresh analysis of Nazi perpetrators’ ‘newspeak’

  • Dana Amir
Article

Abstract

Through a close reading of Jonathan Littell’s The Kindly Ones (HarperCollins, New York, 2009) – a fictional autobiography describing the life of a former officer in the SS who, decades later, tells the story of a crucial part of his life when he was an active member of the security forces of the Third Reich, as well as perpetrators’ testimonies from World War II – this paper focuses on five forms of linguistic attack on linking, by means of which the perpetrator turns his/her allegedly testimonial text into a false representation of a coherent discourse that in fact undermines its own validity. This is achieved by the creation of a double language that dissociates between explicit and implicit meaning, actually rewriting factual and emotional history alike.

Keywords

trauma testimony perpetrator’s language confession attacks on linking screen memories 

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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.HaifaIsrael

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