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"All Quiet on the Western Front Banned in Nazi Germany" Topic

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Personal logo Nashville Supporting Member of TMP05 Oct 2016 6:51 a.m. PST

All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque — Banned in Nazi Germany

Erich Maria Remarque's famous anti-war book about the grinding, brutal fighting in the WWI trenches was a bit too realistic for Hitler. The Nazis banned the book for allegedly denigrating the German war effort and for being a "degenerate book." Fascists tossed All Quiet on the Western Front into some of their earliest book bonfires.

Remarque, himself a veteran of WWI, had to flee Germany, but his sister stayed behind. In 1943, the Nazis arrested her and said, "Your brother is unfortunately beyond our reach — you, however, will not escape us." They beheaded her for "undermining morale."

Not content with taking her head off, Berlin added a particularly vicious twist by billing the expatriate author 90 marks for the executioner's trouble.

The author never said or wrote much about Elfriede, even his diaries. But years later, Erich Remarque dedicated his novel about life in a concentration camp, Spark of Life, to his late sister. Today, there's a street named for Elfriede in the Remarques' native Osnabruck.

Remarque lived to the age of 72. His book on the destructiveness and senselessness of war lives on still.

Great War Ace Inactive Member05 Oct 2016 9:05 a.m. PST

Okay. What prompted that? Interesting, however enigmatic…………….

zoneofcontrol Inactive Member05 Oct 2016 3:30 p.m. PST

I never heard that story. Thanks for pointing it out. And yes, I heard that the Nazis did burn a book or two.

Streitax Inactive Member05 Oct 2016 7:17 p.m. PST

Not to mention the bodies.

Personal logo javelin98 Supporting Member of TMP06 Oct 2016 1:56 p.m. PST

Interesting that one of the best accounts of WWI was "Storm of Steel" by Ernst Jünger, who not only wasn't banned but became the commander of occupied Paris. His book was non-fiction and was not a critique of the war, which might explain why he was received so differently.

B6GOBOS Inactive Member07 Oct 2016 4:57 a.m. PST

Thank you for sharing this. I did not know the book was banned or about the fate of his sister. Yet another crime on the Nazi hands.

KTravlos07 Oct 2016 7:40 a.m. PST

Technically Junger was not commander of occupied Paris. Simply part of the administrative force. He was resposnible for executing German deserters. Despite his anti-nazi sentiments, he did serve the Wermacht in WWII until dismissed in 1944.

Remarque was much more radical in general than Junger(who stopped after 1934 to ofently openly show his disdain for the Nazis as he had in 1927-1933).

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