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The Holocaust in Film

Christian Ideology, the Enigma of Indifference and the Portrayal of the Jew
  • Nancy Thomas Brown
Chapter

Abstract

During the Third Reich, audiences were hardly a passive public manipulated by an ideological apparatus. Over 1,000 German feature films were premiered from 1933 to the end of the war in 1945; ticket admissions increased from 245 million in 1933 to over 1,100 million in 1944. Entertainment during the Third Reich emanated from a ‘ministry of illusion’, not a ‘ministry of fear’.1 Hitler and Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels, keenly aware of film’s ability to mobilize emotions and immobilize minds, created overpowering illusions and captive audiences without displaying overt propaganda. Ideology came packaged in gripping, engaging, and pleasant entertainment steeped in traditional values that coexisted with other emanations of everyday life and culture.

Keywords

Jewish Identity Film Industry Occupied Territory Jewish Question Captive Audience 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Eric Rentschler, The Ministry of Illusion: Nazi Cinema and Its Afterlife (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1996), p.13; Table 1, Cinemas and admissions in the Third Reich.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
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  3. 9.
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    The ‘parable’ is one function of religious consciousness in film in contrast to the ‘mythical image’ discussed in the section on the Weimar era. Myths establish the world, while parables subvert it. Their message and images undermine, question, and challenge the religious and ethical practices and attitudes of the audience motivating them to change their way of thinking and/or their behaviour (Thomas M. Martin. Images and the Imageless: A Study in Religious Consciousness and Film (London: Associated University Press, 1991), pp.161–162.Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nancy Thomas Brown

There are no affiliations available

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