Cover Osteuropa English Articles/2015

In Web Special

Buried feelings
German authors' handling of the Allied bombing in World War II

Volker Hage


No major postwar German novel dealt with the Allied bombing of German cities in World War II: during the Cold War, the echo of the bombs was muffled by the anticipated blast of "the bomb". Nevertheless, argues Volker Hage, wartime experiences pervade the work of all authors who were in the cellars during the air raids. The issue became contemporary only when bombs again fell on European – Yugoslavian – cities: the Kosovan war and the debate about W.G. Sebald's critique of the taboo on the bombing raids sharpened the focus. However, though more and more is being written on the subject, no German author of stature has revised the question of guilt.

(Web Special, pp. 1)