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Wounds That Never Heal: On Anselm Kiefer and the Moral Innocence of the West German Student Movements and the West German New Left

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare Abby Peterson
Publicerad i Cultural Sociology
Volym 6
Nummer/häfte 3
Sidor 367-385
ISSN 1749-9755
Publiceringsår 2012
Publicerad vid Institutionen för sociologi och arbetsvetenskap
Sidor 367-385
Språk en
Länkar dx.doi.org/10.1177/1749975512445427
Ämnesord Anselm Kiefer, Germans-as-perpetrators, Holocaust, moral innocence, West German student, memory
Ämneskategorier Sociologi

Sammanfattning

The West German student movements, the student generation of Anselm Kiefer, were a part of the West German awakening as to their collective guilt for the atrocities committed in the Second World War - the Germans-as-perpetrators debate. They entered this debate with a proclamation of innocence, which Anselm Kiefer did not share. In this article I use the empirical lens of biography and the artistic performances of moral self-incrimination in order to understand the collective moral dilemmas posited by the West German students' proclamation of innocence, their position to maintain a moral high ground in their struggle. Kiefer provoked the German Left by recovering the horror of the Holocaust that the Germans in the post-war period (the 1968 students included) mostly wanted just to go away. Movement artist scholars not only challenge the wider society with their truth-claims, they challenge the movement itself, extending the cognitive boundaries for what can be acknowledged at a given moment in the movement's history.

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