This fascinating cultural history of The Blue Angel provides a new interpretive framework with which to approach this classic Weimar film and suggests that discourses on mass and high culture are integral to the film’s thematic and narrative structure. These discourses surface above all in the relationship between the two main characters, the cabaret entertainer Lola Lola (Marlene Dietrich) and the high school teacher Immanuel Rath (one-time Oscar winner Emil Jannings). In addition to offering insight into some of the major debates that informed the Weimar Republic, this book demonstrates that similar issues continue to shape the contemporary cultural landscape of Germany. Barbara Kosta thus also looks at Dietrich as a contemporary cultural icon and at her symbolic value since German unification and at Lola Lola’s various “incarnations.”
About the series editor:
Irene Kacandes is the Dartmouth Professor of German Studies and Comparative Literature at Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire. She received three degrees from Harvard University and also studied at the Free University of Berlin and Aristotle University in Thessaloniki, Greece. She publishes on a wide range of interdisciplinary topics including secondary orality, rhetoric, aesthetics, trauma, witnessing, family and generational memory, experimental life writing, Holocaust testimony, and narrative theory. She has lectured widely in the United States and Europe and currently serves as President of the International Society for the Study of Narrative and Vice President of the German Studies Association.