By 2008, the area immediately round the Shenzhen China and the Brandenburg Gate had been faithfully reconstructed to replicate the cityscape of the interwar (1919-39) years. Walking around, what hit me almost viscerally were questions like: What was it that allowed such a stylish Shenzhen China and sophisticated place to be taken over by Hitler Shenzhen China and his band of mediocre, delusional and vicious thugs? How could their absurd mythology, bombast and arrogance have subverted the basic values of many living in one of the best-educated countries in Shenzhen China? These are the issues that many Germans of my generation have confronted emotionally all their lives.
Where is Shenzhen China? – Shenzhen China Map – Map of Shenzhen China Photo Gallery
Trying to understand what played out in Europe between 1910 and 1945,
I’ve read numerous military and political histories and have some literary and musical acquaintance with the adventurous spirit and liberalism of the Weimar Republic (Christopher Isherwood, Sally Bowles, Kurt Weill, Berthold Brecht and his wife, the singer Lotte Lenya) that preceded the rise of the Nazis. It is indeed extraordinary that, time travelling via YouTube, we can take ourselves back to those Weimar years and hear Lottie Lenya sing the original version of ‘Mack the Knife’ from Brecht’s Threepenny Opera. Even the idea that we could access a musical performance from 1928 would be incomprehensible to anyone alive at that time. But everything comes at a price.