Tainted Goddesses: Female Film Stars of the Third Reich

Tainted Goddesses: Female Film Stars of the Third Reich

by Cinzia Romani
     
 

A fascinating illustrated history of the German film industry under the Nazis, with coverage of the leading actresses, summaries of the major films, and an assessment of political interference and manipulation.

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Overview

A fascinating illustrated history of the German film industry under the Nazis, with coverage of the leading actresses, summaries of the major films, and an assessment of political interference and manipulation.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This strange book, an Italian import, veers wildly between serious analysis of the Nazi-era German film industry and gushing fan magazine profiles of 18 of the period's female stars. Romani opens with a lengthy and intelligent essay on the Nazi takeover of filmmaking after 1933 and its transformation, under Joseph Goebbels's hands-on leadership, into an ``Aryan'' propaganda machine in which even light entertainment was considered ``strategically important.'' Noting that ``the phenomenon of the star system in the Third Reich achieved almost Hollywoodian proportions,'' Romani points out that only a small percentage of the films made under the Nazis were overt propaganda. Each of the actresses under discussion is represented by a short biography, complete credits and synopses for a couple of key films, including irritatingly redundant excerpts from mostly contemporary reviews. The opening essay suffers from a ghastly translation that either reproduces or amplifies a convoluted sentence structure. The book is handsomely produced and illustrated, but the subject matter and its treatment make it of marginal interest to an American audience. 160 black-and-white photos. (Mar.)
Library Journal - Library Journal
This is a worthy effort to redress an imbalance: the lack of material on women in the Nazi star system. Each of the 18 chapters is devoted to one of the most popular actresses appearing in films under the Third Reich, ending with a detailed examination of a few of her best-known productions. The introduction, which describes how Joseph Goebbels controlled film production and used popular entertainment to prescribe a very specific and narrow role for women in the new Nazi society, is the most interesting part of the book. While there are two genuinely tragic stories here--those of stars Henny Porten and Renate Muller--Romani doesn't adequately prove his secondary theme that these women were all victims of the Nazis and later of anti-Nazi backlash. Still, the book offers some surprising revelations and can be advocated as a fascinating and occasionally chilling look inside the Nazi film industry. Recommended for academic and subject collections.-- Marianne Cawley, Kingwood Branch Lib., Tex.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9788873014638
Publisher:
Gremese International
Publication date:
01/28/2001
Edition description:
REVISED
Pages:
196
Product dimensions:
8.31(w) x 10.64(h) x 0.53(d)

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