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University of Michigan Press

Ethnic Drag: Performing Race, Nation, Sexuality in West Germany

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Title: Ethnic Drag: Performing Race, Nation, Sexuality in West Germany
Author: Katrin Sieg
ISBN: 9780472033621
Publisher: University of Michigan Press
Published: 2009
Binding: Paperback
Language: English
Condition: Used: Near Fine
Excellent, unmarked copy with little wear and tight binding. We ship in recyclable American-made mailers. 100% money-back guarantee on all orders.

Social Science 1525928

Publisher Description:
The Holocaust is considered a singularly atrocious event in human history, and many people have studied its causes. Yet few questions have been asked about the ways in which West Germans have "forgotten," unlearned, or reconstructed the racial beliefs at the core of the Nazi state in order to build a democratic society. This study looks at ethnic drag (Ethnomaskerade) as one particular kind of performance that reveals how postwar Germans lived, disavowed, and contested "Germanness" in its complex racial, national, and sexual dimensions.
Using engaging case studies, Ethnic Drag traces the classical and travestied traditions of Jewish impersonation from the eighteenth century onward to construct a pre-history of postwar ethnic drag. It examines how, shortly after World War II, mass culture and popular practices facilitated the repression and refashioning of Nazi racial precepts. During a time when American occupation authorities insisted on remembrance and redress for the Holocaust, the Wild West emerged as a displaced theater of the racial imagination, where the roles of victim, avenger, and perpetrator of genocide were reassigned.
Ethnic Drag is an accessible and sophisticated, critical and entertaining book that examines the phenomenon of cultural masquerade in order to examine racial feeling, thought, and behavior in postwar German culture. Contributing to considerations of drag in postcolonial, feminist, and queer scholarships, this book will be of interest to people in German studies, theater performance, ethnic studies, and women's/queer studies.
Katrin Sieg is Associate Professor, Department of German and Center for German and European Studies, Georgetown University.