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Auschwitz and no end (2000)

Authors: Wolfgang Schoen and Holger Hillesheim

Auschwitz and no end (2000)
Just now the West Germans have adapted to the Economic Miracle, and then Auschwitz catches up with them. Due to two cases: 1961 Adolf Eichmann is on trial in Israel. A year later the Frankfurt Auschwitz trial starts. The first work of the 32 year old Rolf Hochhuth has recently had its premiere: “The Substitute”. The pope supposedly remained silent about the mass murder of Jews in the Third Reich. A perfect scandal – a German theatre piece causes a world-wide discussion: What’s a morality worth, if it bows to an alleged principle of reality? The theatre reacts to the trials with new design: Peter Weiss’ documentary piece “The Inquiry” becomes a political issue: the reception of the piece traces the fronts of the Cold War. The student movement carries the question about German guilt onto the streets. The USA’s war on Vietnam and its acceptance by the German public opinion causes an extra-parliamentary protest, referring to Auschwitz. The 60s become the century of sharpened German conscience.

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