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'Black Shame' - the campaign against 'racial degeneration' and female degradation in interwar Europe

journal contribution
posted on 06.06.2014 by Iris Wigger
The ‘Black Shame’ campaign used stereotypical images of ‘racially primitive’, sexually depraved black colonial soldiers threatening ‘white women’ in 1920s Germany to manufacture widespread concern and generate panic about the presence of tens of thousands of occupying French troops from colonial Africa on German soil. The campaign, which originated with the German government, quickly developed a momentum of its own and became an international phenomenon, spanning the political divide and incorporating figures from the Left and Right, trades unionists, Christian groups, women’s organisations and key public figures including Edmund D. Morel and Bertrand Russell. It had followers throughout Europe, the US and Australia and was promoted through the modern media. The author here explores the ways in which the racial, sexual, class and national stereotypes that fuelled the campaign interrelated and reinforced one another, creating ‘interlinked discriminations’.

History

School

  • Social Sciences

Department

  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies

Published in

RACE & CLASS

Volume

51

Issue

3

Pages

33 - 46 (14)

Citation

WIGGER, I., 2010. 'Black Shame' - the campaign against 'racial degeneration' and female degradation in interwar Europe. Race and Class, 51 (3), pp. 33 - 46.

Publisher

SAGE © Institute of Race Relations

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Publication date

2010

Notes

Closed access. This article was published in the journal Race and Class [SAGE © Institute of Race Relations] and the definitive version is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0306396809354444

ISSN

0306-3968

Language

en

Exports