Visualisierte Emanzipation. Strategien medialer (Selbst-)Darstellung von Sinti und Roma in dokumentarischen Filmen
Abstract This essay examines three documentary films that critically address socially entrenched antiziganism after the end of World War II. The selected case studies are characterised in particular by the fact that they give a public voice to individual Sinti and Roma who survived the Nazi genocide and can be read as counter-narratives to the state’s repression of the crimes. While the report Der Fall Dr. Eva Justin (1963, Valentin and Irmgard Senger, Hessischer Rundfunk, 15 min.) draws attention to the personal continuity of a Nazi perpetrator in the Federal Republic of Germany’s administrative apparatus, the documentary Söhne des Windes (1973, Georges T. Paruvanani, Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen, 44 min.) exposes the social segregation and discrimination of Sinti and Roma in emergency housing areas in several German cities. Among the minority members speaking in the two features are pioneers of early civil rights work, about whose efforts little is known to date. Finally, in the documentary Das falsche Wort (1987, Katrin Seybold and Melanie Spitta, 85 min.), a Sinteza and civil rights activist stands behind the camera and makes a complete narrative break with dominant-society stagings. Using additional source material, the author interweaves her analysis of the visual with the early history of the emancipation of German Sinti and Roma.