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Germans and African AmericansTwo Centuries of Exchange$
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Larry A. Greene and Anke Ortlepp

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9781604737844

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604737844.001.0001

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The Erotics of African American Endurance, Or: On the Right Side of History?

The Erotics of African American Endurance, Or: On the Right Side of History?

White (West)-German Public Sentiment between Pornotroping and Civil Rights Solidarity

(p.126) The Erotics of African American Endurance, Or: On the Right Side of History?
Germans and African Americans

Sabine Broeck

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter examines the attitudes of the “progressive” segment of the German community, rather than the federal or local government, toward African Americans in Germany and in the United States, at the height of the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s. It shows that the interaction between African Americans and Germans was characterized by white romantization and adoration of black endurance, moral power, suffering, and immersion in the style of black rhetoric. The chapter analyzes work such as Max Frisch’s 1954 essay “Begegnungen mit Negern” (“Encounters with Negroes”), which contained a “pro-civil rights sentiment” coupled with so-called “pornotroping.”

Keywords:   civil rights movement, African Americans, Germans, endurance, moral power, suffering, Max Frisch, pornotroping, Germany, United States

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