As part of Wunderbar Together: Year of German-American Friendship, Goethe Pop Up Kansas City invites everyone to discover contemporary German cinema. Each film will be shown in German with English subtitles. Admission is free and open to the public.
This screening of Hannah Arendt from German director Margarethe von Trotta will tie in with our current exhibition of Holocaust remembrance project Lest We Forget at the Memorial Garden at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. A discussion after the film led by Dr. Scott Baker of UMKC will examine, among other things, themes and ideas relevant to both the film and this exhibition.
In April 1961, the German-Jewish political philosopher Hannah Arendt left her New York exile for Jerusalem to report on the Adolf Eichmann trial for The New Yorker. She is determined to a direct confrontation with those people whose behavior under the Nazi regime she wants to understand. When Arendt's articles appear they unleash a worldwide wave of out rage. She sees Eichmann not as the monster world opinion does, but recognizes him as a pen-pushing killer who wanted to carry out his task to the best of his ability and feels no guilt because he was merely following orders.
The film Hannah Arendt focuses on the scandal caused by Arendt’s analysis of the Eichmann Trial for war crimes in Jerusalem in 1961. In spite of the scandal, Arendt insisted on her right to freedom of speech as a journalist and as a university professor. We will discuss the consequences of her stance, both in the context of the events depicted in the film, as well as more generally for American society today.
Dr. Scott Baker is Associate Professor of German at the University of Missouri Kansas City (UMKC) and will lead the discussion after the film.
Image © Heimatfilm