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Eliseeva A.V. Child Martyrs in the Pantheon of Totalitarian Cultures (H. Steinhoff’s film Hitlerjunge Quex). Studia Litterarum, 2018, vol. 3, no 3, pp. 104–115. (In Russ.) DOI: 10.22455/2500-4247-2018-3-3-104-115

Author: Aleksandra V. Eliseeva
Information about the author:

Aleksandra V. Eliseeva, PhD in Philology, Associate Professor, D.F. Ustinov Baltic State Technical University “Voenmeh”, 1st Krasnoarmeyskaya 1, 190005 St. Petersburg, Russia.

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Received: July 31, 2017
Published: September 25, 2018
Issue: 2018 Vol. 3, №3
Department: World Literature
Pages: 104-115

UDK: 821.112.2.0
BBK: 85.373(4Гем)6
Keywords: German national socialist cinema, child figure in culture, ideology and cinema, propaganda in the cinema, culture and politics, heroic pioneers


The article focuses on the film script for Hitlerjunge Quex (1933, director Hans Steinhoff) written by B.E. Luthge and K.A. Schenzinger. This film is an example of the national socialist propaganda cinematograph at work. The case study discusses the strategies of the child figure instrumentalization for ideological purposes. It draws parallels between the Nazi art and the Soviet art, cinema in particular where similar propaganda models are present, such as the cult of heroic pioneers. The narrative about the heroic deed and martyrdom of the young Nazi has much in common the story about Pavlik Morozov, popular in the Soviet time. The paper deals with ideologemes that unite the “child heroes” constructs in both totalitarian cultures: the myth about the impartiality and “innocence” of the child’s worldview, acclaimed superiority of the public welfare over family relations and others. It also studies the sources of such ideologemes, their connection with Christian, Enlightenment and other belief systems.


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