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The Work of the Brothers Grimm in the Time of National Socialism

On June 22, 2018, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., students of the Institute of German Studies at the University of Kassel will present the research results of a seminar led by Holger Ehrhardt on the reception and instrumentalization of the work of the Brothers Grimm in the period from 1933 to 1945 in a public event at the Breitenau Memorial. The students will present their findings in papers assigned to three thematic blocks: journalism, pedagogy, and philology.

In the thematic block of journalism, the representation of the life and work of the two scientists in daily newspapers is examined. For this purpose, more than 50 articles from newspapers of the Third Reich were evaluated. The journalistic and feuilletonistic representation is traced with regard to the increasing Gleichschaltung in the course of the twelve years of the Third Reich. Of particular interest is the journalistic work of the Grimm scholar Wilhelm Schoof.

In examining the Grimm works as an object of National Socialist pedagogy, the arc is spanned from 1934, from a comparatively harmless instrumentalization of the Children's and Household Tales by the Reich administrator of the National Socialist Teachers' Association, to 1942 and later, when the fairy tales were placed by Nazi pedagogues ever more ruthlessly in the service of National Socialist ideology and finally instrumentalized as a justification for war.

In the philology section, three examples are used to illustrate how scholars increasingly came into conflict because they were ideologically appropriated. On the one hand, the proximity of the Cologne Germanist Friedrich von der Leyen to the National Socialists is shown, on the other hand, how the role of women in fairy tales is interpreted or how so-called "cultural layers" in the KHM are examined in a Viennese dissertation from 1943.

Scheduled lectures:

10:00 to 10:15 a.m.
Holger Ehrhardt:
Introduction The Brothers Grimm and the Third Reich or: Material Limits of an Appropriation

10:15 to 11:15 a.m.
The Brothers Grimm in Nazi Publicity. Between Anniversary Commemoration, Remembrance Culture and Popular Science

Jana Marie von Stockhausen:
Grimm anniversary commemoration in the Third Reich

Nina Rüddenklau/Corinna Lang:
The Changing Perception of the Brothers Grimm in Daily Newspapers and Periodicals

Louisa Friedrich:
Wilhelm Schoof between science and National Socialist ideology

11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
The National Socialist Instrumentalization of the "Kinder- und Hausmärchen" in Pedagogy (Hitler/Schemm, Prestel)

Fabienne Oertel:
The National Socialist implementation of Hitler's educational program through the chairman of the National Socialist Teachers' Association Hans Schemm

Sabrina Kuhaupt:
The didactic implementation of the National Socialist educational programmatic using selected KHM as examples

Fabienne Huy:
The didactic paradigm shift in the final phase of the Third Reich using the example of the KHM

12:15 to 13:15
Grimm Philology under the Influence of National Socialist Ideology

Rosalie van Boxtel and Floor van Beekveld:
The closeness of German studies to National Socialist ideology using the example of the Cologne Germanist Friedrich von der Leyen

Anna-Katharina Schmuck:
The National Socialist interpretation of "cultural layers" in the KHM of the Brothers Grimm using the example of a Viennese dissertation from 1943

Lisa Scherf:
The National Socialist view of women in fairy tales

Location: Breitenau Memorial, Brückenstraße 12, 34302 Guxhagen, Germany

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