‘Mirrors of Ourselves’: Fictional depictions of Germans and Britons in British and German popular culture 1945-1965

Vonberg, Judith (2017) ‘Mirrors of Ourselves’: Fictional depictions of Germans and Britons in British and German popular culture 1945-1965. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Abstract

In the 1990s, Anglo-Germanist Harald Husemann boldly stated the necessity of a comprehensive survey of mutual Anglo-German depictions. While there has been intense scholarly interest in British images of Germanness in recent decades (see Firchow [1986], Cullingford and Husemann ed. [1995], Argyle [2002], Paris [2007], Scully [2012]), this has largely been limited to literary or filmic representations and the comparative, multi-media, popular culture approach has been neglected, as has the immediate post-war period.
Using popular novels, films, television dramas, radio plays and comics – many of which have never been addressed in scholarship before – this thesis maps the interconnected landscapes of British images of Germany and the Germans and German images of Britain and the British in the immediate post-war period (ca.1945-1965). Each chapter takes a theme or debate in the depiction of ‘Britishness’ or
‘Germanness’ and, through close analysis of three case study texts, addresses both the prevailing stereotypes and the (sometimes surprising) counter-narratives, and positions them within broader political, social and cultural contexts.
Although the chapters can be read individually, as a whole the thesis offers a broad yet nuanced analysis of mutual Anglo-German depictions and reveals how images of both Germanness in British fictions and Britishness in German fictions can be read as ‘mirrors’ of contemporaneous understandings of the national self.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Literature and Creative Writing
Depositing User: Jackie Webb
Date Deposited: 09 May 2018 10:32
Last Modified: 09 May 2018 10:32
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/66968
DOI:

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