23 August 2010

The Great Escape from Gestapo County

It's a well-known fact that I've always admired five painters - more than anyone else Turner, followed by Böcklin, Friedrich, Gauguin, and Monet in no specific order. After I'd already visited Friedrich's chalk cliffs on Rügen, I drove further into eastern Germany to the ruins of Eldena Abbey, which appeared in another of Friedrich's paintings.

Eldena Abbey. 
Germany. August 2010.

The title is a reference to the classic movie set during World War II, starring Steve McQueen and an all-star cast featuring Charles Bronson, James Coburn, James Garner, and Richard Attenborough.
Greifswald, the town close to the village in which you find the ruins of the abbey, felt a bit like Nazi Germany. The typical socialist "Plattenbau" can be seen everywhere. There were three radar speed checks on what seemed to be the high street, all within a distance of less than a mile. And the gas station where I refuelled sold the Landser, a pulp magazine whose main goal is to glorify the Wehrmacht. Last but not least, there were two skinheads waiting on another petrol pump. Not the English, 1960's kind of skinheads - the German kind of skinheads! Frightening...

Check out my previous blog post featuring more photos from Rügen.


- Dom


Brooke said...

That housing seems so strange to me...? It makes me realize too how young the U.S. really is and how short our history dates back to.

Dominic Doherty said...

It doesn't seem strange to me because I'm more used to seeing it, but it certainly doesn't seem nice to me either :-)

Anonymous said...

I understand your feelings, but only one point: never I saw more magazines like the "Landser" than in Britain :-D.

And dont forget: ... "Don't mention the war"

Dominic Doherty said...

Hahah, I don't even know what to reply to this... never noticed such magazines; I'd rather read books than mags.
The only thing I could think of instantly that's related to propaganda is the advertisement industry... e.g. Spitfire, they use humorous WW2-related slogans all the time.