Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The problem with unconditional bans

I know these issues are a lot more sensitive in Germany than elsewhere, but this seems a bit off to me:
Mr Kramer launched his critique amid increasing sensitivity in Berlin over The Producers, the comic musical that portrays a singing, dancing Adolf Hitler. It is the first time that the show, which has been seen in London, New York, and Austria, has been staged in Germany. The controversial show is due to run for two months in a venue where Hitler once watched a Shakespeare play. It includes a troupe of storm troopers tap-dancing and Hitler singing: "Heil to me, I'm the Kraut who's out to change our history." Editorials carried in German national newspapers have questioned whether it is right to laugh at Hitler, while the advertising literature for The Producers has been forced to replace the swastika motif with a pretzel, to comply with German law.
I haven't seen the musical, but the original film was one of the greatest moments in anti-antisemitism.

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