Our next screening is a documentary film which looks at the political careers of three high-profile lawyers who helped defend members of West Germany’s infamous Red Army Faction

DIE ANWÄLTE – Eine deutsche Geschichte – THE LAWYERS – A German Story
2010, 92 min., dir. Birgit Schulz, German with English subtitles 


TIME: 17h00

VENUE: Howard College, MTB North Wing, 1st Floor, German Programme, Media Room F251 

About the film:
Berlin, 1972. The days of the student movement are just about to be over… Three lawyers are being photographed in the district court of Moabit: One, Horst Mahler, is accused of actively supporting the terrorist Rote Armee Fraktion, the others, Otto Schily and Hans-Christian Ströbele are his defense counsels. At this time, they seem to be close: they are leftwingers, they fight for freedom, for civil rights….

30 years later, 2002. And the three lawyers meet again in court. This time, they are on opposite sides: One, Otto Schily, has in the meantime become the German Minister for Home Affairs – the Minister for Law and Order – and has asked the Constitutional Court to ban the Neo-Nazi NPD-party. The other, Horst Mahler, has changed his political orientation from far-left to the extreme right. He is member of the NPD and represents it in court, and he has been convicted for denying the Holocaust. Only Ströbele does not seem to have changed so much: He is an MP in the Bundestag, the German parliament, he is a member of the Greens and popular for his commitment for human rights.

In the this documentary film, the  three lawyers speak about themselves, about their ideals and dreams – then and now – and each of them believes he remained true to himself.

For everyone interested in Germany’s post-war history, this is a must-see.

For further details please contact: 

Dr Marion Pape
German Studies
University of KwaZulu-Natal
School of Arts
Durban, 4041
Email: papem@ukzn.ac.za
Tel: 0027-31-260 1086 / 2380
Fax: 0027-31-260 1242

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